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Ensco Orders 2 Advanced Jackups

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On Apr 15, 2014, oil and natural gas driller Ensco plc (ESV) declared that it has placed order for ENSCO 140 and ENSCO 141− two high-specification jackup rigs. The jackups – that are expected to be delivered by the middle of 2016 − will have differentiated technology and specific designs, for complying with most of the regulatory standards in the Middle East.

There is a considerable demand for jackups of differentiated technology and design.  Ensco stated that ENSCO 140 and ENSCO 141 will mainly be used for drilling operations in the Middle East. Apart from complying with the requirements in the Middle East, the rigs also fulfill the required standards outside the region. Thus, the company added that the jackups can also be utilized for drilling purposes outside the Middle East as well.

Ensco has projected the total construction expenses of ENSCO 140 and ENSCO 141 at $430.0 million. The company believes that both the rigs will help customers drill oil and gas fields at reasonable costs.

U.K.-based Ensco is a leading supplier of offshore contract drilling services to the oil and gas industry. Effective Dec 23, 2009, Ensco has shifted its corporate headquarters from Delaware, U.S. to London. Ensco currently carries a Zacks Rank #3 (Hold), implying that it is expected to perform in line with the broader U.S. equity market over the next one to three months.

Meanwhile, one can consider better-ranked players in the oil and gas drilling sector like Helmerich & Payne Inc. (HP), Pioneer Energy Services Corp. (PES) and Seadrill Partners LLC (SDLP). Helmerich & Payne and Pioneer Energy Services sport a Zacks Rank #1 (Strong Buy), while Seadrill Partners holds a Zacks Rank #2 (Buy).

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