Bristow tackles downturn with structural changes

Bristow Group has made structural and leadership changes in order to create a profitable company in an unprecedented downturn.

The company said on Thursday that the new Bristow will have two primary geographical hubs in key areas of business, Europe and the Americas. When complete, the company said these changes will result in a smaller, more nimble company.

Jonathan Baliff, president and chief executive officer, said: “From these two primary hubs, we will concentrate our capabilities to deliver more efficiencies to our clients, as we win more contracts and build a more successful future for Bristow.”


The new Bristow


Bristow’s Europe hub includes Africa, Asia, Australia, Norway, UK, Turkmenistan and the Middle East. The company’s Americas hub includes Bristow Academy, U.S. Gulf of Mexico, Suriname, Guyana, Trinidad, Canada and Brazil.

According to the company, the priorities at these hubs will be on cost efficiencies, including reducing corporate general and administrative costs to approximately 12% of revenues; portfolio and fleet optimization, combined with original equipment manufacturers (OEMs) cost recoveries and capex reduction to improve liquidity and reduce debt; and revenue growth through contract wins in Bristow’s primary hubs with a focus on its core oil and gas clients.

Bristow plans to bid on approximately 30-40 contracts this fiscal year, many of which are currently held by competitors.


Leadership changes 


Bristow also announced a number of leadership changes. Alan Corbett has been named vice president Europe, Africa, Middle East, Asia (EAMEA) and will be responsible for operations and commercial development in those areas, including Airnorth and Eastern Airways operations. He will also have oversight of commercial support activities, both in Houston and in the two primary hubs.

Corbett joined Bristow in 2014, bringing more than 30 years of oilfield service experience to the company. He previously served as Bristow’s regional director for the Europe Caspian Region. Corbett will report directly to Baliff.

Rob Phillips has been named vice president Americas, responsible for operations and business development efforts in the U.S. Gulf of Mexico, Trinidad, Canada, Suriname, Guyana, Brazil and Bristow Academy. He will also have global oversight of operational infrastructure support activities.

Phillips has over 25 years of offshore aviation experience beginning his career as a pilot. He joined Bristow in 2003 and has served in a number of roles at the company, most recently as vice president of global business operations services. Phillips will continue to report to Baliff.

As part of this new structure, Chet Akiri, senior vice president and chief commercial officer, and Bill Collins, senior vice president global operations, have departed the company and their respective positions have been eliminated. Additionally, Chip Earle, senior vice president and chief legal and support officer, has also departed the company.

The company added that the announced structural changes also include reducing the corporate group targeting government work, and moving oversight of commercial development, government and operational functions to the leaders in these geographic hubs. These structural changes also include the elimination of several other corporate positions.

“Significant change in a challenging environment is never easy,” Baliff said, “but Bristow’s willingness to make tough decisions has enabled us to operate in an environment where some others have not. I am confident that the changes we are making today will allow us to strengthen our business through these difficult times and position us to compete successfully and grow our business over the longer term.”

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