Exclusive: BP to cut 15% of workforce – sources

FILE PHOTO: BP’s new Chief Executive Bernard Looney speaks during a Q&A in central London, Britain February 12, 2020. REUTERS/Toby Melville

LONDON (Reuters) – BP plans to cut about 15% of its workforce in response to the coronavirus crisis and as part of Chief Executive Bernard Looney’s plan to shift the oil and gas major to renewable energy, company sources told Reuters on Monday.

Looney told employees in a global online call that the London-based company will cut 10,000 jobs from the current 70,100, most of them by the end of this year, according to sources listening to the call.

A company spokesman declined to comment.

The cuts follow a 25% reduction in 2020 spending announced in April as the coronavirus pandemic brought an unprecedented drop in demand for oil.

The job reductions are also part of Looney’s drive to make the 111-year-old oil company more nimble as it prepares for the shift to low-carbon energy, the sources said.

Looney last month announced a large round of senior management appointments, halving the size of BP’s leaderhip team under his plan to reshape the company’s structure.

Shortly after taking office in February, the 49-year-old CEO said that he was creating 11 divisions to “reinvent” BP and dismantle the traditional structure dominated by its oil and gas production business and its refining, marketing and trading division.

(GRAPHIC – Oil majors’ 2020 spending: here)

Reporting by Ron Bousso and Shadia Nasralla; Editing by Louise Heavens and David Goodman

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