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Aberdeen Press and Journal: SHELL IN BOLD ‘BULLY’ JV

12:53 – 05 November 2007

Shell Ep Offshore Ventures and Frontier Drillships have signed a joint venture designed to lead to the construction of a new drillship concept known as the Bully rig. The Bully is said to set a new standard by offering a flexible, smaller but highly capable vessel suited to deepwater and Arctic drilling while reducing the construction and operational costs compared with current new-build drilling rigs of similar capability.

The Shell/Frontier joint venture expects to deliver the first Bully rig to the Gulf of Mexico by early-2010, and it will be operated by Frontier on behalf of the JV under a separate management services contract.

The Bully rig design has been developed by Frontier in co-operation with Shell’s deepwater experts. It will be capable of drilling with surface blowout preventers (BOP) in up to 3,660m (12,000ft) of water.

The vessel will feature an ice-class hull, allowing for safe and efficient operation in Arctic conditions

The JV claims the Bully will have a significantly reduced environmental impact due to lower emissions through reduced fuel consumption, high-efficiency/low-emission engines and lower steel use for construction. and its sister websites,,,,, and are all owned by John Donovan. There is also a Wikipedia article.

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