Chesapeake Energy will make 275 buyout offers

Associated Press

OKLAHOMA CITY (AP) -- Chesapeake Energy Corp., one of the nation's largest natural gas producers, said Friday that it will offer voluntary severance to about 275 employees, or 2 percent of its workforce, as it continues to cut costs.

Chesapeake has been hurt by a combination of low natural gas prices and investor concerns about its management. The company has sold off $11.6 billion in assets, including land and infrastructure, as it tries to pay off debt. The company aims to eliminate $14 billion in debt this year.

The company said the severance packages will be offered to employees based on their age and years with the company. Employees will have 45 days to consider the offer, and those who accept will leave in February, unless Chesapeake chooses to delay their departures.

Chesapeake Energy has about 13,000 employees, according to its website.

Chesapeake shares fell 11 cents to close at $16.57.