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CEO hired, fired in one month as Mather fights to save Armour Energy

Business

Nick Mather has grabbed control of the daily operations of gas junior Armour Energy after cutting staff wages, announcing redundancies and sacking a new chief executive after a month in the job.

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Armour announced it would cut corporate costs by a minimum 35 per cent with head office staff and directors losing 20 per cent of their pay as well as making an as yet unknown number of people redundant.

In March, Armour announced that Bruce Clement would join the company as chief executive officer.

“Unfortunately, given the changed circumstances brought about by the COVID‐19 pandemic together with the financial downturn in both gas and oil commodity prices and capital markets, agreement has been reached with Mr Clement for his tenure as CEO to come to an end,” the company said.

“As an interim measure, the executive chairman, Nick Mather, will have day-to-day operational management responsibility of the company.”

Armour’s directors may also have to accept that their future pay will be partially in shares.

“Armour will seek to reduce to the full extent possible all other overheads including contractor hours and rates, administration costs and office rent.”

Armour’s current head office is in 111 Eagle St, where Mather’s collection of art hangs on the walls.

“These remuneration reductions are anticipated to remain in place for a six‐month period and will be reviewed as required,” the company said.

Expenditure at the company’s Kincora gas project will be slashed by about 20 per cent but Armour expects it will maintain production.

“This will include revised staff rostering and schedules but will unfortunately include some redundancies.

“Armour is aiming to have implemented the site-related changes by the end of April 2020.”

Mather was the founder of Arrow Energy before selling it to PetroChina for $3.5 billion in 2010. He later sold Bow Energy to Arrow for $550 million.

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