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Posts from ‘December, 2007’

THE AUSTRALIAN: Spotlight on BP investment, culture

Matthew Dalton, Dow Jones Newswires | January 01, 2008

AFTER several years of crippling disasters, oil giant BP is hoping to achieve operational health in 2008.

But questions remain about whether lingering problems within the company’s sprawling US operations could undermine its turnaround.

This year will be the first since 2004 that BP’s two largest US refineries and its giant oil field at Prudhoe Bay in Alaska are expected to operate at full capacity for most of the year. The deadly explosion in March 2005 at its refinery in Texas City, Texas, was the first and most serious in a string of disasters that have cost BP billions of dollars in profits.

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The Times: Need to know: January 1, 2008

Natural resources

Petronas, the Malaysian state oil and gas firm, said it awarded a production sharing contract to Royal Dutch Shell and ConocoPhillips to explore natural gas in eastern Malaysia. Under the deal, Petronas’s exploration arm, Petronas Carigali, will take a 40 per cent stake in the contract to explore and produce natural gas from a cluster of offshore fields in Sabah state. Shell Energy Asia and ConocoPhillips will each have a 30 per cent stake in the cluster of four fields.

read more Middagupdate: Agfa-Gevaert doet het weer

31/12/2007 12:00

Op de Brusselse beurs valt er vandaag weinig te beleven. De deuren sluiten al om 14 uur en in afwachting noteert de BEL 20 in het rood. Agfa-Gevaert en Omega Pharma zijn momenteel de sterkste stijgers, terwijl in de financiële sector Dexia en Fortis wat moeten inbinden.

Aegon en Merril Lynch hebben hun strategische overeenkomst op gebied van verzekerings- en beleggingsproducten voltooid, zo werd vanmorgen bekendgemaakt.

Tegelijkertijd heeft Aegon USA de acquisitie van Merril Lynch Life Insurance en ML Insurance Company of New York voor een bedrag van $1,25 miljard in contanten afgerond.

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COST-CUTTING: Plans were leaked in an email

Monday December 31, 2007

OIL GIANT Royal Dutch Shell plans to shed thousands of jobs in the latest cost-cutting move by the industry.

It is in talks on an outsourcing deal that would transfer a large part of its information technology division to three separate companies.

The division has 3,600 staff, and it is thought Shell would keep 400 while the remaining 3,200 posts would be outsourced. Shell employs about 108,000 worldwide.

Consultations with affec­ted workers are due to start early in the New Year, with the new arrangements due to begin on July 1.

read more Shell Moves With Multi-Pronged Rejig To Tackle Profit Challenge

December 31, 2007: 09:38 AM EST

LONDON -(Dow Jones)- Royal Dutch Shell PLC (RDSB.LN) in 2008 is due to finalize elements of a multi-pronged reorganization, paralleling a similar move by its rival BP PLC (BP), as the side effects of sky high oil prices challenge oil majors’ profits instead of boosting them.

The changes include outsourcing 3,000 computing staff, cuts to finance positions, reshaping expatriates’ packages and a restructuring in its Nigeria ventures, according to announcements and company insiders.

read more Shell Confirms Staff Cuts In Finance Functions

December 31, 2007: 10:29 AM EST

LONDON -(Dow Jones)- A Royal Dutch Shell PLC (RDSB.LN) spokesman Monday said the company is cutting headcount in its finance department, confirming a Dow Jones Newswires report last week.

“We are reducing the number of staff in selected finance functions, and expanding the use of shared services centers where costs are lower,” he said. ” We have already six of these shared service centers (Phillippines, India etc),” the spokesman added.

But he clarified that “there is no plan to reduce staff numbers in a top down, prescriptive way…We are reducing the number of staff in support functions by outsourcing or using shared service centers,” for instance in finance and human resources, he said.

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The Herald: Shell employees fear more job cuts

December 31 2007

Fears are growing that oil giant Shell is preparing to shed around 3200 jobs in the latest cost-cutting move by the industry.

The company has told staff that it is planning to outsource “a substantial part” of its IT infrastructure services division, believed to comprise a total of 3600 staff.

Detailed consultations with workers affected start early in the New Year, with a start date for the new arrangements planned for July 1.

The move by the Anglo-Dutch producer follows hundreds of UK jobs cuts and the off-loading of thousands of other worldwide posts at rival oil firm BP.

read more UPDATE: Shell May Cut Jobs At Finance Department – Source

   (Adds details, possible IT outsourcing.)

   By Benoit Faucon

LONDON -(Dow Jones)- Royal Dutch Shell PLC (RDSB.LN) may eliminate a significant number of positions at its finance department in an effort to streamline its organization, a person familiar with the matter said last week.

Separately, Shell also confirmed it was “in discussions to outsource a substantial part of its (information technology) infrastructure to three suppliers.”

Consideration of such moves follows a decision at rival BP PLC (BP) to cut into management layers to improve efficiencies and reduce expenses in October. They show other majors also see a new need to restructure as cost inflation and resource nationalism bites into profits.

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Daily Mail: Shell to axe 3,200 jobs

31 December 2007, 9:41am

A chill wind is blowing through the corridors of Royal Dutch Shell as the oil titan gears up for an aggressive cost-cutting exercise.

Some 3,200 positions could be outsourced to external providers as the Anglo-Dutch firm slashes its information technology budget, according to an email from a Shell staffer disclosed by ‘gripe site’

Financial jobs are also set to be shed as Shell reduces cross-border overlaps and shunts workers into a handful of major centres.

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Reuters: UPDATE 1-Petronas, Shell, Conoco in Malaysia gas deal

Mon Dec 31, 2007 2:17am EST 
(Adds details)

KUALA LUMPUR, Dec 31 (Reuters) – Malaysian state oil and gas firm Petronas said on Monday it awarded a production sharing contract to Royal Dutch Shell (RDSa.L: Quote, Profile, Research) and ConocoPhillips (COP.N: Quote, Profile, Research) to explore natural gas in eastern Malaysia.

Under the deal, Petronas’s exploration arm, Petronas Carigali, will take a 40 percent stake in the contract to explore and produce natural gas from a cluster of offshore fields in Sabah state.

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Business Standard (India): Shell likely to cut 3,600 IT jobs: Report

Bloomberg / London December 31, 2007
Royal Dutch Shell Plc may cut as many as 3,600 staff in its information-technology division and hire other companies for the work, the Sunday Telegraph reported today without saying where it got the information. 
London-based Shell decided to contract out most of its IT operations, nominating Electronic Data Systems Corp, T-Systems International GmbH and AT&T Inc, the newspaper said. 
Shell plans a series of meetings with employees starting January 8 to outline details, according to the report. The plan to allocate the work to other companies is “substantial” and likely to create “uncertainty”, said an e-mailed letter signed by Goh Swee Chen, vice president of IT Infrastructure, the newspaper reported. 
The letter was posted on an employees’ web site and confirmed by Shell as authentic, the Telegraph added. 
Shell wants the new IT arrangements to take effect by July 1, the newspaper said. 

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