Key Energy Services Inc., the world’s largest rig-based, onshore well service company, said Monday it has completed the sale of the majority of its U.S. land drilling assets to Patterson-UTI Energy Inc. of Snyder, TX, for approximately $62 million in cash.

The assets include 25 active and 10 stacked land-based drilling rigs, as well as related drilling equipment and a rig moving fleet, the Midland, TX-based company said. Key Energy reported it will retain working capital of approximately $10 million.

The Midland, TX-based company also said it recently signed a lease for new office space in Houston and intends to move its executive office there over the next couple of months. It anticipates approximately 25 employees will re-locate to Houston this year.

With respect to the sale, Chairman Dick Alario noted that the company’s strategy is to “focus on segments that are core to our well service business and bring value to our customers. In that regard, we concluded that the contract drilling segment was not an area in which we maintained a competitive advantage.” In addition, “the transaction enhances the company’s liquidity and strengthens the balance sheet.”

The move to Houston is intended to “place our executive team in closer proximity to our customers and the energy community,” he said. “We will continue to have a very large presence in Midland, TX, as the majority of the company’s corporate staff is expected to remain in Midland.”

Key Energy provides diversified energy operations including well servicing, contract drilling, pressure pumping, fishing and rental tool services and other oilfield services. It has operations in all major onshore oil and gas producing regions of the continental United States and internationally in Argentina and Egypt.

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