Atwood drillship startup delay no cause for worry, Cowen says

Atwood Oceanics (ATW -0.6%) disclosed in its latest fleet status report a delay with its Atwood Advantage drillship scheduled to work for Noble Energy in the Gulf of Mexico, but Cowen analysts keep their Outperform rating and $60 price target even while lowering their Q3 earnings estimate to $1.05 from $1.18.

As with any new drillship, the Advantage will experience startup problems during the first six months of operation, which should not cause concern, Cowen says; Ocean Rig (ORIG), Pacific Drilling (PACD) and Rowan (RDC) have faced similar startup issues on newbuild drillships, which are fairly common as the kinks in new equipment and systems are worked out.

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