Keppel wins $300m order in Mexico

PHOTO: Keppel wins $300m order in Mexico

A United States-based unit of Keppel Offshore & Marine has won a contract in Mexico to build a jack-up rig worth US$240 million ($300.2 million).

The rig, ordered by a unit of Mexican firm Perforadora Central, is scheduled to be delivered in the fourth quarter of 2015 and is intended for operations off the Mexico coast.

A total of 13 KFELS B Class jack-up rigs have now been ordered for the Mexican market since 2010, Keppel said in a statement on Thursday.

This will be the fifth jack-up contract that the unit - Keppel AmFels - has undertaken for Perforadora Central since 2002, noted Keppel AmFels chairman Chow Yew Yuen.

"We have steadily built up a strong partnership with them and are pleased that our valued customer is once again entrusting us with a newbuild order for the Mexican market."

Keppel AmFels delivered a jack-up to Perforadora Central in April and is on track to complete another rig for the Mexican firm by the first quarter of next year.

A Perforadora Central spokesman said there is strong demand from Pemex, the Mexican state-owned petroleum giant, for high-quality rigs and the KFELS B Class is a "top-class jack-up" with a proven track record operating in Mexico.

"Our current KFELS B Class jack-up in operation, the Tonala, has been performing outstandingly for Pemex and we are confident that this next jack-up will be just as successful," the spokesman added. "It is an important addition to our portfolio of premium rigs as we expand our presence to be a leading provider of drilling solutions in Mexico."

Keppel O&M is the leading rig provider to the Mexican market, with a total of 20 projects delivered or on order, including the new contract. Of these, 15 are for the firm's proprietary KFELS B Class design, which was developed by Keppel's Offshore Technology Development unit.

The latest contract is not expected to have a material impact on the net tangible assets or earnings per share of Keppel Corporation for this financial year, the firm said.

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