Oil field services major Baker Hughes has announced a round of lay-offs scheduled for Thursday as it prepares to close its Bryan, Texas office as part of a major first-quarter reduction. Fifty-four workers for the oilfield service major are expected to receive pink slips, but the company media department hinted that the affected employees might be moved to other parts of the company.
“Baker Hughes must reduce its cost structure companywide in order to remain competitive in this challenging business environment. The company is making every effort to minimize workforce reductions, and therefore is making the difficult decision to close or consolidate facilities in certain areas. Employees at these locations may be eligible for redeployment. Even as we take these difficult but necessary steps, we remain focused on operational excellence for our employees, our customers, and the communities where we have a presence,” the media department said in a statement.
The company has already closed other Texas and Louisiana plants, thus eliminating more than 400 jobs as part of its effort to slash 7,000 jobs.
In late March, stockholders of Halliburton and Baker Hughes approved a Halliburton merger transaction with Baker Hughes, with the goal of creating “a stronger, more diverse organization,” Halliburton’s David Lesar, chairman and chief executive officer, said.
The oil field services sector has been severely affected by reductions in the number of rigs in production following the drop in crude oil prices. Baker Hughes’ rig count of active oil and gas rigs in March was 1,110, down by 238 rigs from the company’s February rig count of 1,348, and down by 693 rigs from the March 2014 rig count of 1,803.