International oil and gas drilling services company Weatherford International is to reduce its current workforce by 7,000 in the first half of 2014. The job cuts account for around 10% of Weatherford’s global workforce.
The company announced the job cuts at the end of January 2014. The restructuring is aimed at saving costs (estimated at $500 million per annum) and reducing the company’s debts following disruptions to its operations caused by the severe weather in North America and other disturbances in the Middle East and Latin America, which have negatively affected its profits. Presenting its results for the fourth quarter of 2013 on 25 February 2014, the company said that 6,192 positions had already been identified for termination starting from the end of the first quarter of 2014, with estimated annual cost savings of $466 million.
ERM reported that 100 of these job losses are planned at the Norwegian’s subsidiary of the company, Weatherford Norge, with effect from April 2014. It is not yet known whether other Weatherford sites in Europe will be affected by the current wave of job cuts. Other cost reduction efforts involving the closures of marginal non-core areas of the company’s activity are foreseen for this areas, but it is not expected that this will result in Weatherford’s exit as a whole from any country in which it currently operates.