S. Korea’s Samsung Heavy Industries faces $250 mn lawsuit in U.S.
South Korea’s Samsung Heavy Industries Co. faces a lawsuit from Petrobras America Inc., U.S. subsidiary of Brazil’s state-run oil company Petroleo Brasileiro S.A., that claimed $250 million (283 billion won) in damages with a U.S. court.
Samsung Heavy Industries said in a regulatory filing on Wednesday that Petrobras America filed a lawsuit against the Korean shipbuilder over excessive charter fees for a drillship built and delivered by Samsung Heavy Industries to U.S. shipowner Pride Global Ltd. in 2011. Petrobras America claimed $250 million in damages in the lawsuit that will be handled by the U.S. District Court of Harris County in Texas.
Samsung Heavy Industries delivered the drill ship to Pride Global in 2011 under the agreement signed in 2007. Petrobras America signed a separate five-year charter contract with Pride Global on the drillship in the same year.
Petrobras America claimed that it paid excessive charter fees for the drillship because part of the brokerage fee paid by Samsung Heavy Industries to the commissioner when signing the drillship delivery contract with Pride Global was misused. Commission fees are generally paid to a broker between the shipbuilder and ordering entity when signing a shipbuilding contract.
Samsung Heavy Industries said it was not involved in the charter contract signed between Petrobras America and Pride Global and that it will actively counter the legal action by forming a legal and technology advisor group consisting experts from home and abroad. The company argued that a considerable part of what has been claimed by Petrobras America is based on weak grounds, and it does not lie within its field of responsibility.