Hercules Offshore announces bigger stake in Discovery Offshore

Hercules Offshore has moved closer to full ownership of Discovery Offshore, a Luxembourg-based company that owns two high specification harsh environment jack-up drilling rigs.

Hercules announced Monday it has increased its total investment in Discovery to more than half of outstanding shares and will make a mandatory cash tender offer for all remaining outstanding shares of the company.

John T. Rynd, CEO and president of Houston-based Hercules Offshore, said in a written statement that the two high-specification Discovery rigs will expand the company’s service offerings “and open new international markets that have growing needs for assets of this caliber. With construction of both Discovery rigs nearing completion, we feel conditions are right for us to acquire the entire entity.”

The first Discovery rig was delivered June 7, according to the Hercules announcement. The second is scheduled for delivery in October.

Hercules and All Coast LLC also announced that they had entered into an agreement for All Coast to acquire Hercules’ domestic liftboat assets, including 29 active market liftboats, 10 inactive liftboats and related assets.

All Coast reported the price at approximately $57.5 million and said the closing is expected  in early July. All Coast was formed for the transaction and will be based in Lafayette, La.

Hercules previously had  sold its inland barge segment, and Rynd said that and the sale of the domestic liftboat business is part of a strategic move to concentrate on international drilling, the international liftboat business and the Gulf of Mexico operations, among other markets.