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UPDATE 1-Offshore driller Hercules says weeks from bankruptcy

Thu 23rd July, 2015 6:23pm
(Adds comment on timing of bankruptcy, support from creditors, 
details on balance sheet and financial results) 
    July 23 (Reuters) - Hercules Offshore Inc  HERO.O , stung by 
slumping demand for drilling services in older Gulf of Mexico 
oilfields, said on Thursday it plans to file for creditor 
protection in about three weeks and emerge several months later 
with a restructured balance sheet. 
    The small company, which rents out jackup rigs to drill 
shallow water wells that tend to yield less than giant deepwater 
ones, has been struggling for months because of an oversupplied 
rig market and slumping oil prices that have forced producers to 
slash spending. 
    In November it cut 15 percent of its workforce, or 324 jobs, 
and last month started talks with creditors for an orderly 
bankruptcy filing. 
    Hercules said on Thursday it has support for the filing from 
holders of over two thirds of its collective outstanding debt. 
It added that the prepackaged process will reduce the time it 
spends in bankruptcy protection, which it hopes to leave early 
in the fourth quarter.  ID:nL3N0Z43SR  
    The company's balance sheet lists $266 million in current 
assets and $1.35 billion in current liabilities. 
    Hercules shares were down 5.8 percent at 15.35 cents on 
Thursday afternoon. It posted a second-quarter net loss of $88.3 
million, compared with net income of $6.6 million in the same 
period a year ago. 
 
 (Reporting by Sneha Banerjee and Narottam Medhora in Bengaluru; 
Editing by Savio D'Souza, Terry Wade and Andrew Hay) 
 ((sneha.banerjee@thomsonreuters.com; within U.S. +1 646 223 
8780, outside U.S. +91 80 6749 1130; ; Reuters Messaging: 
sneha.banerjee.thomsonreuters.com@reuters.net)) 
 
Keywords: HERCULES OFFSHRE BANKRUPTCY/
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