13 April 2015
DNB Bank ASA (Oslo) (“DNB”), as agent and security agent on behalf of a syndicate of lenders, instructed Watson Farley & Williams (‘WFW’) on a US$475 million secured loan to the Ocean Rig Group for the financing of the ultra‐deepwater drillship “Ocean Rig Apollo”. The drillship was constructed at Samsung Heavy Industries in Korea and delivered on 5 March 2015. The drillship is on contract with Total E&P Congo. This follows an earlier US$1.35 billion export credit‐supported loan also arranged by DNB for the Ocean Rig Group and documented by WFW.
The loan is divided into three tranches; one funded by a group of commercial lenders; one funded by Korea Eximbank (KEXIM); and one funded by DNB and Credit Suisse and guaranteed by KEXIM. The mandated lead arrangers were DNB and DVB Bank SE.
DNB is Norway’s leading financial services group and one of the largest in the Nordic region in terms of market capitalisation. DNB is one of the leading financiers in the maritime sector and an important client of WFW serviced through many of the firm’s international offices.
The WFW team was led by London partner Nigel Thomas, supported by associate Ida Marie Oedegaard. WFW’s Paris and New York offices provided assistance under French and Marshall Islands law, respectively.
WFW London partner Nigel Thomas said: “We are delighted to have advised our long‐standing client, DNB, supporting the acquisition of another significant offshore asset for the Ocean Rig group.