Houston Driller Wins $622 Million in Settlement

An international tribunal has determined that Petrobras, Brazil’s state-run oil company, is liable to pay $622 million to settle a contractual dispute with a deepwater drilling contractor operating out of Houston.

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The tribunal, convened in Houston through the International Center for Dispute Resolution, concluded 2-1 to award the damages to Vantage Drilling International upon finding that Petrobras had breached a 2009 drilling contract involving the contractor’s Titanium Explorer, a deepwater drilling ship.

The arbitration alleged that Petrobras in 2015 wrongfully terminated its eight-year contract with Vantage, claiming the company had breached its obligations. Vantage, which had then agreed to drill in the Gulf of Mexico, filed an international arbitration claim against Petrobras.

Vantage, a Cayman Islands company with operational headquarters in Houston, operates a fleet of three ultra-deepwater drillships and four premium jack-up drilling rigs. Law firm Quinn Emanuel, which represented Vantage in the arbitration, this week filed a petition in federal court in Houston to enforce the judgment. [read more]

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