Rowan cutting Gulf of Mexico jobs

Houston offshore driller Rowan Cos. is cutting up to 85 jobs in the Gulf of Mexico with more layoffs likely in the fall.
Rowan is following the trend of the sluggish offshore energy sector, idling rigs and cutting jobs as the contracts expire for its rigs and deepwater drillships in the Gulf.
Rowan axed close to 150 deepwater Gulf jobs earlier this summer when it idled its Rowan Reliance drillship.
Now, Rowan is eliminating jobs in the shallow Gulf as contracts expire for its shallow water rigs, known as jack-ups. Rowan told the Texas Workforce Commissions it is cutting 60 to 85 jobs from its Rowan EXL III jack-up rig when its contract with Arena Offshore expires at the end of September.
If the rig finds new work in the near future, some of those people could be retained or re-hired, the company said.
But Rowan warned this month that its Gorilla IV jack-up rig in the shallow Gulf also will see its contract expire with Arena at the end of October, very possibly triggering more layoffs at that time.
“The U.S. Gulf of Mexico remains one of the weakest jack-up reefs in the world and it may be challenging to secure continuous work for the EXL III and the Gorilla IV, while we are talking to multiple operators about future opportunities,” said Rowan Executive Vice President Mark Keller earlier this month.