|UPDATE 1-Gulf of Mexico operator ATP files for bankruptcy|
Reuters - UK Focus – 1 hour 25 minutes ago
Aug 17 (Reuters) - Gulf of Mexico producer ATP Oil & Gas Corp filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection on Friday, blaming the financial fallout of the deepwater drilling moratorium that followed the 2010 Deepwater Horizon disaster.
ATP, which reported total debts of $3.49 billion and assets of $3.64 billion, said it planned to continue its operations while it restructures, funded by $618 million in debtor-in-possession financing.
The Houston-based company said in the filing in Texas court that its development plans and cash flows had been "dramatically impacted" by the deepwater drilling stoppage which ran for many months after the BP Plc well blowout off the Louisiana coast in April 2010.
"While the moratorium adversely affected all companies involved in deepwater drilling in the Gulf of Mexico, the impact was especially profound on ATP, which is a smaller company than its principal competitors, with a heavier concentration of operations in the deepwater Gulf of Mexico," ATP said.
The company said the U.S. government's stoppage blocked its plans to drill and bring online six wells in 2010 and 2011, after it spent more than $1 billion on infrastructure construction related to five of them, largely funded by debt.
ATP said the bankruptcy filing was made in order to undertake a "comprehensive financial restructuring."