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Precision Drilling profit, revenue rise Add to ...

Precision Drilling Corp. is reporting net earnings of $66-million, or 23 cents per share, for the three months ended March 31, 2011.

That compares with net earnings of $57-million, or 20 cents per share, in the first quarter of 2010.

Revenue for the first quarter totalled $525-million, up from $373-million for the same period of 2010.

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Analysts polled by Thomson Reuters were on average expecting Precision to report earnings of 26 cents per share and revenues of $503-million.

Precision is Canada's largest oilfield services company, with a presence in the United States and Latin America.

Last month, the Calgary-based company announced the acquisition of two U.S. companies: Drake Directional Drilling, LLC and Drake MWD Services, LLC. It did not disclose financial details.

Precision has been focusing most of its attention recently on drilling oil wells, since crude prices are so much higher than those of natural gas.

Precision has said a large portion of its $405-million capital budget for 2011 is going toward building and upgrading rigs.

Precision converted from an income trust into a corporation last spring in anticipation of federal tax changes that came into effect earlier this year.

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