Schlumberger to Sell its Middle East Drilling Business to Saudi Arabia’s TAQA

The deal will bolster Arabian Drilling Company’s fleet to 67 rigs across the Middle East and North Africa.


The drilling subsidiary of Saudi Arabia’s Industrialization and Energy Services Company (TAQA) has agreed to acquire Schlumberger’s Middle East onshore drilling business for $415 million.

The deal includes 16 onshore rigs in Kuwait, Oman, Iraq, and Pakistan and will bolster the fleet of Arabian Drilling Company (ADC) to 58 onshore rigs, along with 9 offshore rigs, across the Middle East and North Africa. After the deal closes, expected in the second half, the combined firm will have more than 5,900 employees.

Established in 1964, ADC is a limited liability partnership between TAQA, which owns 51% of the unit, and Schlumberger, which owns the remaining 49%.

TAQA said the purchase is part of its 2021 strategy to become a leading regional oilfield services and equipment company. It plans to accomplish this by moving into new markets, providing services using new technologies, and delivering more integrated client services. 

ADC accelerated its expansion in 2018 with the commissioning of 16 rigs to support Saudi Aramco’s growth plans.

TAQA is a joint stock company owned by the Kingdom’s Public Investment Fund, Saudi Arabian joint-stock companies, and institutional investors. Its subsidiaries are involved in drilling services, production and completions, seismic data acquisition and geophysical mapping, and the manufacturing of OCTG and API pipes.