By David Wethe (Bloomberg) –Transocean Ltd. has tapped Lazard Freres & Co. LLC to be its financial adviser as the world’s biggest owner of deepwater oil rigs confronts history’s worst crude crash.
The Swiss-based rig contractor said Wednesday in a statement the firm’s hiring is in connection with an evaluation of strategic alternatives to manage its capital structure. Transocean has also made some internal reorganization moves, including the transfer of its Endurance and Equinox rigs into a newly created indirect subsidiary, according to the statement.
Offshore rig contractors have been among the most beaten sectors of the energy industry since oil prices first fell from more than $100 a barrel in 2014. The group failed to cope with a glut of floating drilling capacity that was a decade in the making, as exploration companies shifted focus to cheaper inland shale. This year’s plunge in crude prices made any near-term recovery in offshore drilling even less probable.
Smaller rivals Noble Corp. and Diamond Offshore Drilling Inc. have filed for bankruptcy while Valaris Plc announced last month that it may file for Chapter 11.
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