On Friday, March 20 Evergreen Chairman and CEO Mark Sexton along with President and Chief Operating Officer Michael Joy spoke with local media to announce they had been forced to cut their staff by 10 percent amid what Joy explained was “respectively a black swan type of event.”
“We did not plan for the global pandemic of the Corona virus which has destroyed a significant amount of gas demand,” said Joy, “which will be as short lived as the Corona virus continues to effect the United States economy. The other thing that has happened is a commodity war, largely between Saudi Arabia and Russia, and it’s effecting US oil and natural gas operations.”
This has created what Joy stated was a rush of supply to the market at the same time that demand for said supply has unexpectedly plummeted.
“Despite our best planning, it had a significant economic impact on us,” said Joy.
Sexton also expressed the decision to cut workforce was difficult for them but important to assure the longevity of Evergreen and that they would be doing everything they could to be creative with operating efficiency to avoid any further cuts.
“There are other things we will work on with our contractors and working on more efficient structures at every level of the organization,” said Sexton. “We’re going to work on corporate communications promoting better communications internally and are going to continue to work to improve our cost structure. Our priority is to do that without further reductions in force.”
“This was a one time event,” added Joy. “Evergreen is not leaving the community or shutting down operations. It’s as close to usual business as it can be.”
It was also stressed that the company and employees desire to continue to offer what they can for the community now and into the future.
“We want to communicate that Evergreen as a company is not at risk,” said Joy. “We fully intend to continue to operate in the community as we have before. We have, as we have done in the past, asked our employees to continue to be active in supporting the community and we also reached out to the school districts to offer our assistance whether that’s in infrastructure, or the ability to deliver lunches to families or kids who are out of school.”
Sexton expressed that as the virus passes and the economy turns around, they will continue to employee local residents in the future. Joy proudly stated he believed the work force in this region to be one of the company’s greatest assets and decreasing workers was only done after thoughtful consideration.
“Reducing the force was a difficult decision for everybody and not one that we took lightly,” said Joy. “The most important asset we have here is the employee base and we do believe that we have the best, most skilled, and most dedicated employees that you’ll find in the oil and gas industry anywhere in Colorado and frankly, around the country. We did it with both the hope and expectation that it shores up the balance sheet and ensures the long-term survival of the company.”