For the thousand or so employees at SBM Offshore in Fontvieille, it has been a waiting game since the company announced on June 24 that it would axe 180 jobs in Monaco.
Citing Covid-19 as “a catalyst” to restructuring, the three entities in Monaco of SBM Offshore Group that will be affected by the company’s decision are Single Buoy Moorings Bureau d'Etudes SAM, Offshore Energy Development Corporation SAM and Imodco Terminals S.A.
“The content of the discussions with the personnel delegates is confidential, and we will communicate first towards our employees when more information is available and can be shared,” Vincent Kemkes, SBM Offshore Group Communications Director, tells Forbes Monaco in regards to the on-going negotiations.
Maître Delphine Frahi, who specializes in labor law and is advising staff representatives of the SBM Offshore entities, told French daily Monaco-Matin that “One of the proposals relayed by staff consists of a temporary reduction in remuneration at all levels. It has also been proposed to use more teleworking to free up, at least temporarily, certain premises, which are currently under-occupied.”
The news of layoffs was made on May 14 when SBM Offshore CEO Bruno Chabas provided the First Quarter Trading Update. The service provider to the oil sector “delivered a good set of results during the first quarter of 2020, in line with expectations” but after feeling an “impact of the supply and demand crisis in the oil and gas market” has become “more cautious about 2020.”
Despite reporting a Q1 directional revenue of $607 million, in line with expectation, with a directional revenue guidance adjusted from “above” to “around” $2.3 billion, SBM Offshore announced it was cutting 300 jobs and introduced a recruitment freeze.
As at the end of March 2020, SBM Offshore had $2.1 billion of liquidity, with $0.5 billion from cash balances, $1 billion from the undrawn revolving credit facility and $0.6 billion under the remaining Liza Unity project loan.
In 2015, SBM Offshore cut 1,200 positions worldwide, including 200 in Monaco.