Rowan Companies plc, a Houston-based drilling contractor, has reported net income of $123.7 million for the three months ended March 31, 2015 compared to $59.6 million in the first quarter of 2014.
Net income for the prior-year quarter included a litigation settlement gain which increased net income from continuing operations by $20.9 million. The prior-year quarter also included a gain from discontinued operations which increased net income by $4.0 million. Excluding the impact of these items, net income for the first quarter of 2014 was $34.7 million.
Rowan’s revenues were $547 million in the first quarter of 2015, an increase of 45% over the prior-year quarter due primarily to the contributions from three of the company’s newbuild ultra-deepwater drillships. The first two ultra-deepwater drillships began operating in April and October 2014, and the third ultra-deepwater drillship began operating on February 1, 2015.
On May 5, 2015, the company amended and restated its revolving credit agreement to increase the borrowing capacity from $1.0 billion to $1.5 billion and to extend the maturity date by one year to January 23, 2020. Commitments during the final year of the agreement decline by $60 million to $1.44 billion.
Tom Burke, President and Chief Executive Officer, commented, “We are pleased with our first quarter operating results which reflect higher earnings and better margins due to the contributions from three newbuild ultra-deepwater drillships, low out of service time and significant cost control efforts.
“Although it is difficult to determine the duration and severity of the current industry downturn, with our drillship capital expenditures largely behind us, our contractual backlog and our strong balance sheet, we believe we are well-positioned to weather the storm and take advantage of opportunities when markets begin to recover.”