Stibbe successfully represents Vantage in enforcement of international arbitration ruling

NL Law
Stibbe has represented Vantage Deepwater Drilling Inc. and Vantage Deepwater Company (Vantage) in the enforcement of an arbitral award against Petrobras in the Netherlands. Stibbe worked on this matter in close cooperation with Quinn Emanuel Urquhart & Sullivan and Sidley Austin.

In August 2015, Petrobras America, Inc., Petrobras Venezuela Investments & Services, BV, and PetrĂ³leo Brasileiro S.A (Petrobras), notified Vantage of the termination of a drilling contract, alleging Vantage had breached its contractual obligations. Vantage immediately filed a claim in arbitration against Petrobras, claiming wrongful termination of the drilling contract.

In June 2018, an international arbitration tribunal ruled in favour of Vantage and awarded damages in the amount of USD 622 million plus interest, and dismissed the Petrobras's counterclaims against Vantage.

Vantage commenced recognition and enforcement proceedings in both the United Stated and the Netherlands. In connection with enforcing the arbitration award against Petrobras, Vantage secured leave from the Amsterdam District Court in the Netherlands on August 22 2018, on the basis of which certain of Petrobras' assets in the Netherlands were frozen.

In May 2019, the Federal District Court in Houston, Texas confirmed the award against Petrobras, PAI and PVIS. The court denied Petrobras's motion to vacate the arbitration award and established the amount owed by Petrobras to Vantage at approximately USD 733 million. With payment received from Petrobras, parties agreed that the U.S. judgment is satisfied in full. Upon this satisfaction, the Dutch attachments have been lifted and the Dutch proceedings have been stayed. Petrobras has lodged an appeal against the U.S. judgment.

Click here for the press release of Vantage and other international press coverage about the case here, here, here and here.