20 December 2008

Press Release: StatoilHydro new part owner of Seabed Rig AS

Important technical and financial partner becomes new part owner of Seabed Rig

Through the last three years, the Stavanger-based company Seabed Rig AS has developed a submerged autonomous seabed drilling rig for exploration drilling in arctic and deep waters.

The technical development has now entered phase 2, where a full-scale prototype of a fully-automated drill floor will be manufactured and tested. This part of the project has a budget of some 50 MNOK, and the test will be performed at IRIS, Stavanger in 2010. The project is supported by the Norwegian Research Council (Petromaks and Demo 2000 programs) and Innovation Norway.

In the last couple of years, StatoilHydro has been an important technical and financial partner, and now the potential customer also enters the ownership side in Seabed Rig AS. Other large shareholders are Convexa and iPark AS.

- To get StatoilHydro as a part owner in the company is a recognition of the fact that the company is well-positioned towards future exploration technology. Also, it will be very important for the commercialization of the technology, says Lars Raunholt, CEO of Seabed Rig AS

- For StatoilHydro this is an exciting technology within drilling of oil and gas wells, which is a strategically important area for StatoilHydro. We want to contribute actively so that this technology can be made available in the market place by supporting both the technology development as well as the commercialization, says Lars Nordli, Vice President StatoilHydro Industrial Development.