British oil major BP Plc is close to selling its central London headquarters for about 250 million pounds (US$325.65 million) as the coronavirus pandemic has forced the company to cut costs, the Financial Times (FT) reported on Nov. 3.
The office, located at St James' Square, which houses about 500 employees is under offer to Lifestyle International Holdings, a Hong Kong-based investor, FT reported, citing people familiar with the matter.
The London-based company in October announced plans to lay off around 10,000 employees, about 15% of its global workforce, at a cost of around $1.4 billion spread over the next few quarters.
BP CEO Bernard Looney, who took over in February, had laid out plans in June to cut costs and "reinvent" the business for a low carbon future.
The coronavirus pandemic led to both sharp drops in oil and gas prices and weak fuel demand, which continues to weigh on refining profit margins, with BP refineries operating at 80% of capacity.
BP did not immediately respond to Reuters request for comment. (US$1 = 0.7677 pounds)
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BP and Delek Group-owned Ithaca Energy have started oil and gas production at the Vorlich field in Britain's central North Sea, the companies said on Thursday.
U.S. energy firms added oil and natural gas rigs this week, boosting the oil count for the fourth month in a row as producers return to the wellpad with crude prices mostly trading over $40 a barrel since mid June.