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Cobalt International Energy used the Petroserv SSV Catarina Rig to drill the Lontra #1 discovery well off the coast of Angola.  (Cobalt International Energy)

Cobalt sells its offshore Africa assets for $1.75 billion

Cobalt is unloading its 40 percent stake in two sizable blocks offshore of Angola in the deal that is expected to close by Jan. 1, subject to customary Angolan government approvals.
(AP Photo/Gerald Herbert, File)

Senators ask SEC to probe oil companies’ risk disclosure

A dozen Democrats insist oil companies aren’t telling shareholders the gritty reality of their crude pursuits, including the environmental and financial risks of drilling in the Arctic Ocean and other frontier areas.
Noble Energy hunts for oil offshore Israel in the Tamar field. The Houston-based oil company has stalled its Israel investments after a dispute with the country's anti-trust regulators. (Noble Energy)

Noble reaches deal with Israel over natural gas development

The deal sets a price ceiling for future sales to Israeli companies and commits the gas firms to complete the development of the country’s largest gas field, known as Leviathan, by 2020.
Rig workers pause while mopping the decks on a Hercules rig. (Smiley N. Pool/Houston Chronicle)

Hercules Offshore files bankruptcy with plan to convert debt

In court papers filed in Delaware federal bankruptcy court, the Houston driller said it had more than $1.3 billion in debt and about $546 million in assets. It said it expects to be in bankruptcy proceedings for 45 to 60 days and that it doesn’t anticipate it will halt daily operations.
Frank Springett, vice president of engineering of the pressure control group for National Oilwell Varco, 6390 N. Eldridge Parkway, talks about the riser joint that connects the blowout preventer subsea to the drilling rig shown Thursday, April 18, 2013, in Houston. (Melissa Phillip/Houston Chronicle)

Oil field companies cutting 276 more jobs in Texas

National Oilwell Varco and Cal Dive International, two oil field service companies based in Houston, are cutting a combined 276 jobs in Texas this month, state regulators said Monday.
At the GE Oil & Gas  manufacturing site in North Houston on June 30, 2014, an annular blowout preventer, designed to seal the area around a drill pipe, sits atop a blowout preventer stack that also includes ram blowout preventers designed to drive blades through the pipe itself.  (Eric Kayne/For the Chronicle)

GE shows off drone footage of Houston BOP factory

The company kicked off the campaign in Houston, at its factory near George Bush Intercontinental Airport where it manufacturers blowout preventers, the three-story tall pieces of equipment that act as the final barrier to ruptured offshore oil wells.
conocophillips offshore

ConocoPhillips to scale back deep-water exploration and Gulf of Mexico programs

Houston-based ConocoPhillips has already trimmed its 2015-2017 capital spending program from an initial $16 billion to about $11.5 billion per year after crude oil prices fell last fall. Of that $11.5 billion, less than $1.8 billion was dedicated to exploration.
Screengrab of an infrared image captured by the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration of the tropical disturbance in the Gulf of Mexico, June 15, 2015. (NOAA)

Enterprise Products Partners evacuates three offshore platforms; other companies watching tropical storm closely

Oil companies and refiners are keeping a close eye on a tropical disturbance in the Gulf of Mexico, but the storm hasn’t shut down operations or triggered evacuations of essential personnel.
The hull of Chevron's Big Foot oil platform arrived in Texas in March 2013, after a three-month journey from Korea. It is scheduled to begin production in early 2014, 225 miles south of New Orleans, floating in 5,200 feet of water. (Chevron)

Additional tethering failures add to problems plaguing Chevron’s Big Foot project

Three more tendons sank to the ocean floor, adding to the problems that Chevron has been working for more than a week to assess. In addition, all six of the massive buoys holding the tendons in place have also sank, including the portion of one that was adrift.
Amedeo Marcotulli is the new Xodus Subsea general manager in Houston. (Xodus)

Xodus Subsea adds new Houston leadership, but slows growth plans

Xodus Subsea launched in October as a global energy engineering firm with plans to quickly establish a North American headquarters in Houston and grow.

But then the collapse in oil prices sped up. Fast forward a few months and London-based Xodus Subsea has a new Houston leadership team in place, although the growth plans have slowed along with the overall energy market.