Denmark-based Maersk Oil said Thursday that it will close its Houston office and cut about 100 positions.
The company said that “challenging market conditions for deepwater developments” have prompted it to reduce its organizations in Angola and the United States.
The move will result in the closure of the company’s Houston office and a reduction of its Luanda, Angola team, impacting about 100 staff positions in total across the two sites.
Sixty employee and contractor positions will be impacted in Houston and 40 employee and contractor positions will be impacted in Luanda.
The changes will transfer some responsibilities for the Luanda project to Maersk Oil’s Copenhagen headquarters and leave an office of 18 people in Luanda to continue working on the Chissonga project’s maturation.
The offshore Chissonga project is located in Block 16, about 195 miles northwest of Luanda,
Maersk said its non-operated activities in the Gulf of Mexico, currently run from Houston, will be transferred to the company’s Copenhagen headquarters in “the coming months.”
The company said the decision was reached after “extensive and ongoing work” to reduce capital expenditure and improve returns of the un-sanctioned Chissonga project.
“Chissonga, like many deepwater projects in our industry, remains economically challenged in the current market environment. Maersk Oil remains committed to the Chissonga project and we have evaluated multiple options to commercialize these resources in the best interests of our partners and the Angolan authorities,” Maersk Oil’s Chief Operating Officer Gretchen Watkins.