Seadrill Agrees With Banks in First Step Toward Refinancing

Seadrill Ltd., the offshore driller with the biggest debt load, reached a deal with its banks to extend its three nearest credit lines and amend covenants as it seeks to ease its burden amid a drop in the demand for offshore rigs.

In the “first phase of a broader plan to refinance and recapitalize the business,” Seadrill extended two credit facilities maturing this year and another maturing in 2017 for its North Atlantic Drilling Ltd. unit, according to a company statement Friday. Banks also agreed to ease covenants — conditions put in place by lenders related to a borrower’s overall debt levels — until June 30, 2017.

Shares of the company rose 11 percent to 41.39 kroner at 10:02 a.m. in Oslo, the highest in more than a month.

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