Noble Corporation and Pacific Drilling announced today that they have entered into a definitive merger agreement under which Noble will acquire Pacific Drilling in an all-stock transaction.
The definitive merger agreement was unanimously approved by each company’s Board of Directors.
The transaction has also been approved by a majority of Pacific Drilling’s equity holders, and no shareholder vote is required for Noble to close the transaction. As part of the transaction, Pacific Drilling’s equity holders will receive 16.6 million shares of Noble, or approximately 24.9% of the outstanding shares of Noble at closing.
Noble expects to realize annual pre-tax cost synergies of at least $30 million, and additionally, will move to dispose of the Pacific Bora and Pacific Mistral expeditiously. The transaction is subject to customary closing conditions and is expected to be completed in April 2021.
Noble’s President and Chief Executive Officer, Robert Eifler, said: “The acquisition of Pacific Drilling will enhance our position in the ultra-deepwater market through the addition of its technologically-advanced ultra-deepwater drillships, which are highly complementary to Noble’s existing fleet. By bringing these modern drillships into the Noble fleet, we will be able to better serve the needs of our customers globally and to participate in a wider range of drillship tender activity. The combination brings together two companies who share a common culture prioritizing safety and operational excellence. Additionally, the acquisition expands and further solidifies our relationship with certain key customers, facilitates re-entry into both the West African and Mexican regions, and strengthens our presence in the US Gulf of Mexico.”
Bernie Wolford, Pacific Drilling’s Chief Executive Officer, stated: “Bringing together the Pacific Drilling and Noble fleets creates a stronger and more stable combined company with the scale to provide solutions for our clients on a global basis. This combination will advance the ongoing recovery in the industry and will allow Pacific Drilling equity holders to fully participate in that recovery. I would like to personally thank the entire Pacific Drilling team for their unwavering commitment to delivering safe, efficient and reliable services to our customers, and we look forward to working with Noble to successfully integrate the two companies.”