Diamond Offshore ( DIG) turned in a sparkling first-quarter profit as the contract driller saw its floating-rig business surge.

Net income for the quarter was $348.6 million, or $2.51 per share, up from $290.5 million, or $2.09 per share in the year-ago period.

Analysts polled by Thomson Reuters expected $2.22 a share.

Revenue was up 13% to $885.7 million from $786.1 million. Analysts expected $878.5 million.

Diamond, based in Houston, saw revenue rise in its "high specification floaters" and "intermediate semisubmersibles."

The company also declared a special cash dividend of $1.875 per share and a regular quarterly cash dividend of 12.5 cents per share, both payable June 1 to shareholders of record on May 1.

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