It is expected the majority of the approximately 300 management, professional and technical staff now assigned to the New Orleans office will be offered positions within the consolidated Production organization in Houston, or in other units of the company. For the administrative and clerical staff located in New Orleans, currently some 80 employees, a severance package based upon years of service will be offered.
ExxonMobil will continue to have a substantial presence in Louisiana. The consolidation will not have an impact on the company's onshore or offshore field operations in the state. The company's refining and chemical processing operations in Baton Rouge, a lubricants manufacturing facility in Port Allen and a statewide network of retail stations remain well established. More than 5,000 employees and approximately 2,300 contractors are associated with these operations, contributing more than $750 million annually to the state economy through employee payrolls, taxes, charitable contributions and royalty payments.
Houston now serves as the headquarters for the global operations of ExxonMobil's exploration, development, production, gas and power marketing and upstream research businesses. By locating the new U.S. Production organization in Houston, the company will realize a greater sharing of expertise and technology, economies of scale and the benefits of centralized management. Total U.S. production for ExxonMobil, which includes output from the consolidated Production organization and joint-interest operations, averages about 700,000 barrels per day of net crude oil production and more than 2.2 billion cubic feet of net natural gas production available for sale each day.
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