More staff reductions for Maersk Oil

Company split in two last year as part of a broad-based reorganization.
By Daniel J. Graeber Follow @dan_graeber Contact the Author   |   Jan. 9, 2017 at 8:10 AM

COPENHAGEN, Denmark, Jan. 9 (UPI) -- Danish energy company Maersk Oil said it was cutting staff from one of its offices as part of the broader reorganization started last year.

Danish group A.P Moeller-Maersk split in two in September, with its oil-related business spinning off to focus on the British, Danish and Norwegian waters of the North Sea.

Maersk Oil said it was working to improve its efficiency under the reorganization by cutting about 160 positions from one of its Danish business units.

"We recognize that this announcement will be unsettling news for them," Chief Operating Officer Martine Rune Pedersen said in a statement. "It is however a necessary step in order to remain competitive in the Danish North Sea and the wider Maersk Oil business."

In June last year, the company had advanced on a restructuring plan by sidelining top executives and by then had already announced plans to cut about 40 positions from its regional offices.

A week after the September split, Maersk Oil said it was making cuts in its technology and project group and parting ways with additional top executives.

Trade union officials last year said Maersk cuts were a blow to an industry already coping with a downturn in the North Sea. British energy company BP in 2016 reduced its North Sea headcount as it moved to streamline operations during the market downturn. Royal Dutch Shell, which acquired British energy company BG Group in early 2016, continued to cut staff as it streamlined the operations for the combined entity last year.

Maersk said its reorganization efforts will continue to evolve over the coming months, though some of the efforts will be completed during the first quarter.

"What we are announcing today will ensure our long term future in a sustainable manner and it is a step in our efforts to support the Maersk Oil North Sea ambitions," Patrick Gilly, a managing director for Danish operations, said.

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