Aker Solutions swings jobs axe in Norway

Aker Solutions on Monday notified subsea employees in Norway about the company’s latest round of job cuts amid a continued market slowdown.

The company stated that this would affect management and other staff in Norway.

Aker Solutions already reduced its workforce in Norway in its maintenance, modifications and operations (MMO) unit in January 2016. In addition, the company in February announced reduction in salaries for its senior management and other staff in the Norwegian MMO unit and this plan was to become effective in March.

Aker Solutions said on Monday that as many as 600 permanent positions at facilities in Fornebu, Moss, Tranby and Ågotnes may be affected. Workforce reductions will be made through normal employee turnover and redundancies.

“These are tough but necessary measures to strengthen the subsea business’ competitiveness during a challenging time for our industry,” said Per Harald Kongelf, head of Aker Solutions’ Norwegian operations.

The company said it was restructuring its global subsea business to “enhance development of its subsea technology and products as it expands in key markets outside Norway”. A third of Aker Solutions’ order backlog of 40 billion kroner was for subsea work in West Africa at the end of 2015.

“We are proactively building on our strengths in the subsea area, where our competence, technology and strong customer relationships put us in a prime position to capture opportunities when the market recovers,” said Alan Brunnen, head of Aker Solutions’ subsea business.

The company in 2015 reduced capacity in its global subsea business by about 1,000 permanent positions. More than half of the adjustments were in Norway.

Aker Solutions has about 15,000 permanent employees in approximately 20 countries. About 7,000 of these are in the subsea area, of which about 2,500 are in Norway. The rest are in countries including Brazil, Angola, Malaysia, the U.S. and the UK.