Pittsburgh-based EQT confirms layoffs, but details are scant | TribLIVE.com
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Tom Davidson

Pittsburgh-based shale gas producer EQT Corp. confirmed Monday it had laid off employees but would not say how many.

The company’s new management team has “taken a number of decisive actions to improve operational efficiency, cash flow and EQT’s financial position,” it said in a statement released Monday.

“We are removing management layers, streamlining functions and reducing shared services,” the company said. “The decision to reduce headcount was a difficult but necessary step in our ongoing effort to enhance performance.”

The company employs more than 900 people, according to its website.

The layoffs come about a year since a merger between EQT and Rice Energy Inc. was completed in November 2017.

Rice family members Toby Z. Rice and Derek A. Rice sent a letter Dec. 10 to the EQT board seeking power to enact their business plan for the company.

That plan would generate an incremental $400 million to $600 million pre-tax cash flow above EQT’s projections, the Rices wrote, and they sought authority from the EQT board to give Toby Rice “proper authority and support to oversee operations.”

A conference call scheduled for that week was canceled the next day because of a death in EQT CEO Robert McNally’s family. It hasn’t been rescheduled.

EQT will be providing more information associated with what it is called a “targeted savings plan” in the coming weeks as part of its 2019 capital program announcement, according to the statement released Monday.

On Monday afternoon, shares of EQT were trading at $19.86, up 30 cents from where it closed on Friday.

Tom Davidson is a Tribune-Review staff writer. You can contact Tom at 724-487-7208, [email protected] or via Twitter @TribDavidson.

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