Seadrill shares dive as it prepares Chapter 11 proceedings and swings to loss

 
Courtney Goldsmith
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Seadrill's shares have tumbled 99 per cent since 2013
Seadrill's shares have tumbled 99 per cent since 2013 (Source: Seadrill)

Shares in troubled offshore drilling contractor Seadrill sank today after it announced it plans to launch a Chapter 11 debt restructuring in September.

At the same time, the oil rig firm revealed a loss before tax of $113m (£88.2m) for the first half of the year compared with a profit of $556m the previous year.

The firm, which has struggled in the low oil price environment, said it plans to conclude negotiations on its restructuring on or before 12 September.

Seadrill was once the biggest offshore rig company by market value, owned by the Norwegian billionaire John Fredriksen, but its share price has plummeted 99 per cent from its peak in 2013. It has been considering Chapter 11 proceedings since the beginning of the year.

The firm's Oslo-listed shares dropped around 20 per cent on the back of today's news.

"Our primary objective at the moment is concluding final negotiations on our comprehensive restructuring plan, which is at an advanced stage and likely to be implemented via Chapter 11 proceedings on or before 12th September 2017," said Anton Dibowitz, chief executive and president of Seadrill.

"Although the market continues to be challenging, continued operational execution and strong customer relationships has enabled us to re-contract a number of units during the quarter. With a young versatile fleet and upon completion of our restructuring, we will be well placed to capitalise when the market recovers."

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