North Sea operator Spirit Energy has launched a consultation on redundancies in Aberdeen.
The firm, which informed employees yesterday, has not confirmed the number of roles which may be cut, but it is understood the main impact will be in the Aberdeen office, alongside roles in the Netherlands.
Following the sale of Spirit’s Norwegian and Danish business this year, owner Centrica placed the remaining UK and Netherlands segments in “run-off” mode, with no further investment in oil and gas production.
Spirit Energy had around 350 employees in Aberdeen and around 800 in the UK in 2020, though it’s expected that number may have reduced since the sale of the Norwegian arm.
A Spirit Energy spokesperson said: “Earlier this year, Spirit Energy refocused its strategy on three key areas: safely delivering production from our existing assets; meeting and de-risking our decommissioning obligations, and exploring strategic energy transition opportunities from our existing assets.
“Following the recent sale of our Norwegian and Danish businesses, our next step is to ensure that we have the right organisational structure, size, resources and skill set in place. As a result, we have met with colleagues to announce our intention to go into consultation about proposed changes to the way our business is structured.
“Throughout this consultation process, our focus will be on our people and maintaining safe operations.”
Spirit Energy is majority owned by Centrica, the same firm which owns British Gas.
In June, Centrica completed the sale of Spirit Energy Norge – which covers the majority of the operated business – to private equity-backed Sval Energi.
Meanwhile Spirit has said the remaining UK and Netherlands business will be in “run-off” mode with no further investment in oil and gas, leading to questions over its future.
Centrica had been trying to sell the business since 2019, a process which stalled during the Covid downturn, having previously cited issues like “disappointing production volumes” from the subsidiary.
In February, Spirit Energy unveiled a new CEO Neil McCulloch after incumbent Chris Cox stood down following six years with Spirit and Centrica.
Spirit Energy’s key asset is a 61.2% non-operated stake in Cygnus, one of the largest gas fields in the UK, which is operated by Neptune Energy.
Elsewhere it operates the Morecambe Bay Hub in the Irish Sea and has operated holdings in a number of subsea tie-back fields and a normally unmanned installation in the North Sea.
The firm recently started decommissioning the Chestnut field, which was in operation since 2008.
Chestnut’s FPSO, the Hummingbird Spirit, has been towed to the Cromarty Firth and renamed “Excalibur” ahead of heading to the Ping Petroleum Avalon field next year.