Baker Hughes (NASDAQ:BKR) has lodged plans for the demolition of its site in Bridge of Don, but said a potential offer has already been received which could secure its future.
The Houston-headquartered energy services firm has been present on Aberdeen’s Woodside Road since the 1970s, when the oil boom was in its infancy.
Over the years the building there has undergone expansion – with a £100,000 cash injection in 2002 for a new training centre.
However, the oilfield giant is now seeking permission from Aberdeen City Council to knock down the 211,829sq ft building off Ellon Road.
Last year some 100 jobs were lost at the plant when the manufacturing base there was shut down.
At the time, a spokesperson said “unprecedented market conditions” and a drop-off in demand meant it was no longer possible for its Eastern Hemisphere business to operate four manufacturing facilities, prompting cost-cutting measures.
Now empty, the building is watched over by a security firm.
Despite its application, the company told the Press & Journal that demolition may only be one route for the site.
A spokesperson said Baker Hughes has received an offer for the complex which could secure its future.
The planning application has been lodged in case the sale falls through.
The firm says having permission to flatten it might provide “attractive optionality to an alternative potential buyer”.
Demolition is a route many firms have gone down to avoid paying huge business rates on empty premises. According to the Scottish Government’s non-domestic rates calculator, the old factory could cost as much as £476,000 every year in tax.
Baker Hughes has upwards of 4,000 employees in the UK and supports more than 3,000 suppliers.
In Angus, some 80 – 90 jobs are believed to have been cut last year at the firm’s Montrose sites, following the impact of Covid-19. More recently, consultations on revised working patterns have prompted strike action at the town’s two plants.
During the first half of the year, the Houston-headquartered firm reported pre-tax losses of $468m, on par with the same period last year at $469m.