Image courtesy of Schlumberger.

Services giant Schlumberger said Thursday it will cut 9,000 jobs and take $1.77 billion in write downs as it braces for prolonged low oil prices and curbed upstream activity.

The move will eliminate eight percent of the Houston based company’s 120,000 employees.

“In response to lower commodity pricing and anticipated lower exploration and production spending in 2015, Schlumberger decided to reduce its overall headcount to better align with anticipated activity levels for 2015,” the company said.

Schlumberger will take a $296 million charge for the headcount reduction.

Further details about the layoffs have not been disclosed.

The company recorded a $806 million impairment charge tied to restructuring its WesternGeco marine seismic fleet along with a $199 million impairment charge on the carrying value of an SPM development project in the Eagle Ford shale play.

Schlumberger also took a $472 million write down tied to its readjusted currency exchange rate in Venezuela.

Despite the write downs, Schlumberger saw a fourth quarter revenue bump driven by strong activity in Argentina, Ecuador, Sub-Saharan Africa, Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates and North America.

The company reported a fourth quarter revenue of $12.6 billion, a six percent year-on-year increase, and approved a 25 percent dividend bump to $0.50 per share, beginning with the dividend payable on April 10, 2015.

“In this uncertain environment, we continue to focus on what we can control. We are convinced that performance must now be driven by an accelerated change in the way we work through our transformation program,” Schlumberger CEO Paal Kibsgaard said.


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