Operations review

Capricorn Energy’s Edinburgh staff facing job cuts

Capricorn Energy
Capricorn was launched in Edinburgh as Cairn Energy

Capricorn Energy, the Edinburgh-based oil and gas producer, is making about 120 of its UK workforce redundant.

The new board said it is consulting with its 238 global employees and expects to have fewer than 40 in the UK as it focuses on its operations in Egypt.

Capricorn was previously known as Cairn Energy, launched by former Scottish rugby international Sir Bill Gammell.

Its headquarters in Clydesdale Plaza, Lothian Road, Edinburgh, is likely to be affected by the staff cuts and changes in office requirements. Staff will be eager to know if the head office will remain in Scotland.

The board is due to deliver a strategy update on 27 April following a shareholder revolt over its now-withdrawn plans to merge with Israeli gas producer NewMed Energy.

Objections to the deal led to a boardroom clear-out, including the departure of the chair and chief executive. A new board mostly comprises members proposed by activist investor Palliser.

In a statement today, the board said it had concluded that Capricorn’s near-term strategic focus should be primarily on Egypt , and to farm down, monetise or exit exploration concessions outside Egypt.

“As a result, Capricorn will need a substantially reduced headcount in the UK and will therefore shortly enter a redundancy consultation process which is expected to result in an organisation of less than 40 people in the UK. Capricorn anticipates the majority of these changes will be made in the coming two months.  

“As a result of the reduced headcount, the company will be reviewing its UK office space requirements to align to the expected size of the renewed organisation. 

“A further update with more quantitative and qualitative detail on costs will be provided on 27 April, as part of the wider strategic review update.

Its activities in the southern North Sea focused on five licences alongside joint venture partner, Deltic Energy.

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