HOUSTON, Aug. 6, 2013 /PRNewswire/ -- Rowan Companies plc ("Rowan" or the "Company") (NYSE: RDC) announced today that one of its subsidiaries has entered into a three-year contract with Cobalt International Energy, L.P. ("Cobalt") (NYSE: CIE) for the Rowan Reliance, one of Rowan's new ultra-deepwater drillships currently under construction at the Hyundai Heavy Industries Co. Ltd. ("HHI") shipyard in Ulsan, South Korea. The drillship is expected to operate in the U.S. Gulf of Mexico. (Logo: http://photos.prnewswire.com/prnh/20120827/DA62568LOGO) The Rowan Reliance is expected to be delivered from HHI at the end of October 2014. The contract is expected to commence late January 2015 following mobilization. The effective day rate for the work will be $602,000, including mobilization revenues, and adds $660 million in revenue backlog. Matt Ralls, Rowan's Chief Executive Officer, stated, "We are very pleased to enter into this relationship with Cobalt. They have a very exciting growth story with a strong track record in ultra-deepwater exploration. We will complement their growth potential through our expansion into the ultra-deepwater drilling segment with the most advanced drillships in the industry. We are proud to have this opportunity to be part of the future success of this exciting company." The Rowan Reliance is one of four ultra-deepwater drillships being constructed for Rowan by HHI. All four drillships are based on a GustoMSC P10,000 hull design, capable of drilling wells to depths of 40,000 feet in water depths up to 12,000 feet. The DP-3 compliant, dynamically positioned drillship will be equipped with retractable thrusters, two readily deployable seven-ram BOP systems, five mud pumps, dual mud systems and a maximum hookload capacity of 1,250 tons. With the award of this contract for the Rowan Reliance, three of the Company's four ultra-deepwater drillships under construction at HHI are now under contract. The fourth remaining uncontracted drillship, the Rowan Relentless, is scheduled to be delivered from the shipyard at the end of March 2015. Rowan Companies plc is a major provider of international and domestic contract drilling services with a leading position in high-specification jack-up rigs. The Company's fleet of 30 jack-up rigs is located worldwide, including the Middle East, the North Sea, Trinidad, Egypt, Southeast Asia and the Gulf of Mexico. Rowan will enter the ultra-deepwater market with four high-specification drillships expected to be delivered starting in late 2013. The Company's Class A Ordinary Shares are traded on the New York Stock Exchange under the symbol "RDC". For more information on the Company, please visit www.rowancompanies.com. Statements herein that are not historical facts are forward looking statements within the meaning of the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995, including, without limitation, statements as to the expectations, beliefs and future expected business, financial performance and prospects of the Company. These forward-looking statements are based on our current expectations and are subject to certain risks, assumptions, trends and uncertainties that could cause actual results to differ materially from those indicated by the forward-looking statements. Among the factors that could cause actual results to differ materially include oil and natural gas prices, the level of offshore expenditures by energy companies, variations in energy demand, changes in day rates, cancellation by our customers of drilling contracts or letter agreements or letters of intent for drilling contracts or the exercise of early termination provisions, risks associated with fixed cost drilling operations, cost overruns or delays on shipyard repair or transportation of rigs, maintenance and repair costs, costs or delays for conversion or upgrade projects, operating hazards and equipment failure, risks of collision and damage, casualty losses and limitations on insurance coverage, customer credit and risk of customer bankruptcy, conditions in the general economy and energy industry, weather conditions and severe weather in the Company's operating areas, increasing complexity and costs of compliance with environmental and other laws and regulations, changes in tax laws and interpretations by taxing authorities, civil unrest and instability, terrorism and hostilities in our areas of operations that may result in loss or seizure of assets, the outcome of disputes and legal proceedings, effects of the change in our corporate structure, and other risks disclosed in the Company's filings with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission. Each forward-looking statement speaks only as of the date hereof, and the Company expressly disclaims any obligation to update or revise any forward-looking statements, except as required by law.