Nov 19 - Fitch Ratings has assigned a 'B+/RR4' to Tuscany International
Drilling Inc.'s (Tuscany) proposed USD200 million, seven-year senior
unsecured notes, issuance. The 'RR4' Recovery Rating on the issuance reflects an
average expected recovery in the event of default.
Tuscany's foreign and local currency Issuer Default Ratings (IDRs) are both
'B+',with a Stable Outlook.
The notes will be guaranteed by Tuscany's subsidiaries: Tuscany South America
Ltd., Tuscany Perfuracoes Brasil Ltda., Tuscany Perfuracoes Nordeste
Ltda.,Tuscany Riga Leasing S.A. and Caroil SAS. Fitch expects the company to use
the proceeds from the issuance primarily to refinance existing revolver debt
balances, and for general corporate purposes.
Tuscany's ratings reflect the company's moderate leverage, experienced
management team, and a technologically advanced asset fleet, which is either new
or has recently been refurbished, and gives the company a competitive advantage.
The ratings also incorporate a degree of counterparty credit risk in its
diversified customer base, a relatively small rig fleet, and exposure to the
cyclical and competitive onshore drilling industry. Tuscany faces the
operational challenge of consolidating its business following a period of
historically aggressive growth.
Leverage is low for the rating category, reflected in a consolidated total debt
to EBITDA ratio of 3.3x reported as of the last 12 months (LTM) ended September
2012. Fitch expects the company's leverage to decline below such levels over the
medium term. Interest coverage is adequate at 3.1x as of LTM September 2012 and
is expected to be around 3.5x by 2013.
The company could choose to use its accumulated cash to expand its rig fleet,
while maintaining the same leverage and break-even to positive free cash flow.
As of September 2012, Tuscany's consolidated nominal debt was approximately
USD219 million, of which approximately USD200 million corresponded to a term
loan used to finance acquisitions during 2011, and the balance was debt drawn
down from an existing revolving credit facility. Pro forma debt is expected to
be around USD245 million in 2012 (consisting of USD200 million in bonds and USD
45million drawn from a new US$75 million revolver facility), with possible
paydowns of a drawn revolver.
Smaller Fleet Size and Customer Base
The company's rig fleet is relatively small with 41 onshore drilling rigs, which
limits operational diversification as well as the ability to serve larger,
financially stronger oil companies and their demand for rigs. Tuscany's small
fleet size exposes the company to weather or operational issues surrounding a
particular rig, specifically those that are more technologically advanced and
receive higher day rates. Tuscany has exposure to customers that tend to have a
lower credit quality, which adds to counterparty risk. The majority of Tuscany's
revenues during 2011 were generated from small- to medium-sized independent oil
and gas companies, which in general are more sensitive to oil price volatility
when compared with larger, integrated oil and gas companies.
Cyclical and Competitive Industry
Tuscany's cash flow generation ability is exposed to oil price volatility, as a
substantial decrease in oil prices could reduce the exploration activity of its
counterparties and lower demand for rigs. A sustained downturn in day rates and
utilization levels could affect Tuscany's ability to generate cash flow from
operations and pressure its ratings. The drilling market is highly competitive
and is characterized by short-term contracts. Companies in the sector tend to
have short-term contract backlogs of one to two years, but have built long-term
relationships with their client base. Tuscany's contract backlog is small given
the company's short history. The company is expected to concentrate on building
long-term commercial relationships in the short to medium term. A possible
deterioration in customer credit quality remains a concern, although this risk
is somewhat mitigated by reasonable customer diversification.
Growing Cash Flow Generation in 2012
The company's cash flow generation is expected to increase in 2012 due to the
consolidation of recently incorporated assets in Brazil, Colombia and Africa.
Fitch expects Tuscany's EBITDA to be approximately USD70 million in 2012,
significantly higher than the USD32 million reported in 2011 as a result of the
incorporation of the newly acquired assets. The company's EBITDA would likely
remain at this level over the next four years with only modest increases due to
improving efficiencies and modest fee increases. During the first nine months of
2012, EBITDA increased to USD49 million, reflecting the new business platform.
Over the same period, Fitch expects annual interest for Tuscany to range between
USD20 million and USD23 million and its annual maintenance capital expenditures
to average approximately USD20 million. The company expects total debt to remain
stable at USD245 million and to marginally decrease if it pays down a portion of
its revolver debt overtime.
Improved Liquidity Position
Tuscany was able to improve its tight liquidity as it extended its loan due
during September 2012 to September 2013 and modestly improving its debt profile.
As of Sept 30, 2012, Tuscany's liquidity was low at USD 4.6 million but was
enhanced by the company's access to a new committed revolving facility for USD45
million over the next five years. In November 2012, the company had drawn USD 25
million from such a facility. This facility will be replaced with a new USD 75
million revolver which will come into place once the bond is issued, Tuscany
plans to draw USD45 million that will be used to cancel the previous facility,
which will leave USD30 million of additional liquidity available under the
revolver. Fitch expects Tuscany to maintain a more robust minimum cash position
Catalysts for a negative rating action include a significant deterioration of
the company's rig fleet utilization levels, coupled with lower than expected day
rates, which could lower EBITDA and lead the company's credit quality to
deteriorate. The ratings could also be downgraded if the company's debt and
coverage ratios do not improve in line with Fitch expectations. A positive
rating action could result from the satisfactory consolidation of the company's
current business, or a higher level of medium-term contracts with solid
Tuscany is an oil and gas service company incorporated in Canada that operates,
for the most part, in Latin America. The company offers drilling services and to
a lesser extent work-over services. Approximately 80% of the company's rigs are
less than five years old or have been recently refurbished. As a result of this,
day rates for approximately 60% of rigs are at or above USD25,000. Tuscany
operates predominantly in Latin America and approximately 60% of the fleet is
concentrated in Colombia and Brazil, reflecting a modest geographic
diversification. The company was created in 2008 and was initially focused on
the construction of 19 state of the art onshore drilling rigs. In 2011,
following the acquisitions of companies in Brazil, Colombia and Africa,
Tuscany's rig fleet increased to 41. In May 2011, the company acquired Drillfor
Perfuracoes do Brazil Ltd, which added 7 rigs. In September 2011, the company
added 15 rigs to its fleet when it acquired Caroil for an all-in cost of USD204