CQS RIG FINANCE FUND LIMITED
Monthly Shareholder Fact Sheet
20 August 2008
CQS Rig Finance Fund Limited (the "Company") a closed-ended investment company
incorporated in Guernsey, is pleased to announce that its Monthly Fact Sheet
for July 2008 is now available on the Company's website:
The investment manager's commentary in the Fact Sheet is as follows:
The Investment Manager has elected to move to a monthly Fact Sheet publication
so as to provide more timely commentary on developments in the market in which
the Company invests.
July was a very slow month due to the traditional summer holidays in Norway.
Domestic accounts were quiet and the main brokers were running on skeleton
staff. These low levels of activity were reflected in the markets in which the
What little trading did occur appeared to be in names with perceived lower risk
such as Sevan Marine ASA and PetroMena ASA, while selling pressure continued in
names with perceived higher construction and/or contract risk. The Company did
switch some positions away from bonds in those companies with perceived higher
risk into those with perceived lower risk. Overall gearing was marginally
reduced during July.
Despite a fall of almost 16% in the price of WTI oil prices during the month
from a high of approximately US$145/bbl on 3 July to a low of US$122/bbl on 29
July, there was encouraging news regarding both offshore rig utilization rates
and corporate activity continued to be buoyant. According to Rigzone, worldwide
offshore rig utilization nudged up to 88.3% as at 1 August, against 88% the
month before. On the corporate front, there were a number of positive
developments for the Company's holdings.
On 7 July, China Oilfield Services ("COSL") announced a recommended voluntary
cash tender offer for 100% of the shares of Awilco Offshore. Offrig is a
wholly owned subsidiary of Awilco. Offrig has bonds that are secured against
semi-submersible drilling rigs being constructed in China. The bonds have no
mandatory pre-payment for change of control; however we believe the credit
quality should be enhanced on closing. COSL's 83% shareholder is China
National Offshore Oil Corp ("CNOOC") which is A+ rated by Standard & Poor's
(foreign issuer credit) and A1 rated by Moody's (issuer rating).
On 31 July, Nexus Floating Production Limited announced that it had signed a
letter of intent ("LOI") with Burgundy Global Exploration Corporation in the
Philippines for lease of the FPSO Nexus # 1. The LOI has a value of
approximately USD 800 million for seven years, which we estimate implies a day
rate of USD 313,000.
Marine Subsea reported on 31 July that it has completed the sale-lease-back
transaction for the two Accommodation Construction Support Barges, African
Fjord and African Caribe. Marine Subsea will maintain full operational control
of the assets (bareboat). Accordingly, 15% of the Marine Subsea USD 130 million
bond was redeemed at 108% on 8 August 2008 and 20% of the USD 170 million bond
is scheduled to be redeemed at 107% in September.
Following the summer break, Norwegian staffing levels should return to normal
towards the end of August. However, we are unsure if liquidity will improve as
the overall state of the credit markets is weighing on this sector. We
therefore anticipate a relatively quiet month.
All market data is sourced from Bloomberg
For further information, please contact:
Lynette LeProvost Alastair Moreton
Secretary Director, Corporate Finance
Kleinwort Benson (Channel Islands) Arbuthnot Securities
Fund Services Limited
01481 727111 020 7012 2000