Abu Dhabi National Energy (Taqa) is trimming 16 per cent of its staff at headquarters, part of a cost-cutting effort at home and abroad.
The cuts at the utility owner and energy investor are targeted at reducing general and administrative costs by at least US$20 million next year.
The majority government-owned company employs about 3,300 staff around the world, and 189 will remain at headquarters after the reorganisation.
“As our business matures, we continue to review our structure to ensure that we have the right people in the right places to meet the challenges in front of us,” said Carl Sheldon, the chief executive. “There are a number of roles that we no longer require as a business and this will result in a reduction in the number of employees in headquarters.”
The retrenchment at headquarters follows the reduction of 162 people from its North American oil and gas business earlier this year, as Taqa sought to centralise operations there to remain competitive amid low domestic gas prices brought about by the shale boom.
That will save the company $28m this year, said Taqa, which is also hoping to reduce its acreage to a focused area about two-thirds its current size to make drilling more efficient.
In Abu Dhabi, Taqa is cancelling vacancies and allowing contractors’ contracts to come to an end. About six people will be moved to roles in other Taqa locations.
“We have tried to minimise the impact of these changes,” said Mr. Sheldon. “But the changes are not driven just by cost saving. They are about positioning Taqa for success and ensuring the corporate centre is fit for purpose.”
After years of far-flung acquisitions, Taqa has focused on consolidating its international holdings, shedding assets such as a power plant in the Caribbean and investing regionally instead in places like the Kurdistan region of Iraq.
Last month Taqa struck a deal to sell its stake in NGT, a Dutch pipeline system, for $240m and confirmed it had shelved plans for a $12 billion Turkish coal mining and power generation project because of spending priorities.
It is also moving towards launching its first initial public offering abroad, listing part of its Moroccan power business to raise $181m.
“We will continue to reshape the portfolio and manage our exposure to ensure we have the right balance of international assets and quality of earnings,” said Mr Sheldon.
“We will concentrate on those businesses where we have a distinctive advantage and that deliver most effectively on the vision of Abu Dhabi and the UAE.”
Shares of Taqa on the Abu Dhabi bourse rose more than 4 per cent yesterday to Dh1.4.