Halliburton may sell part of KBR

| 9/24/2004

Halliburton Corp. may sell off all or part of its Kellogg, Brown & Root subsidiary, a company spokeswoman confirmed.

KBR employs a number of truckers, including OOIDA members, in its military trucking operation in Iraq.

According to Wendy Hall, a spokeswoman for Halliburton, the company’s CEO, Dave Lesar, said Halliburton would separate the KBR engineering and construction unit if the company's shares “do not trade at multiples comparable to its peers once it puts its asbestos problems behind it.”

The company inherited a number of liabilities from another firm it acquired. The deal to settle the asbestos claims occurred when Vice President Dick Cheney was head of the Houston-based Halliburton.

Hall said Halliburton would “separate” the unit through a sale, spinoff or initial public offering.

Hall implied that any layoffs that might occur in connection with the consolidation and possible sale would not include truckers.

“We do not have a number at this time, but most of the reductions will be in the management level jobs,” Hall wrote in an e-mail to Land Line. “The goal is to build a stronger business for KBR. This is about reducing the number of product lines into two divisions that will enable us to operate more efficiently and compete in today’s market. Achieving this goal will benefit both our shareholders and employees.”

Company officials said in a news release on Thursday, Sept. 23, that KBR planned to consolidate its five current “operating units” into two divisions to increase efficiency.

– By Mark H. Reddig, associate editor