Posted: Feb 6, 2012 6:00 PM by Melissa Anderson (KXLH-Helena)
HELENA- A nearly $3 billion business deal will result in the loss of 90 jobs in Helena.
Heritage Propane, which is owned by Energy Transfer Partners, was sold to Amerigas; the transaction was made final as of January 12, 2012.
The Helena office is responsible for general accounting and many administrative functions, which will now be transferred to the office in Pennsylvania, according to Amerigas vice president Bill Katz of Valley Forge, Pennsylvania.
Katz says the decision to eliminate the positions didn't come lightly, but the financial platform they chose to use for their operations is based at their headquarters in Pennsylvania.
They retained consultants to help them decide between two systems, SAP and PeopleSoft platform; PeopleSoft was chosen, and as a result, financial functions at Heritage Propane in Helena, now Amerigas Propane, will no longer be needed.
Katz said, "We're expecting that the transition period will take until June some time. After that we'll be making severance available for the people who are displaced and we will be conducting some out placement seminars to help people get their resumes together and plan their job searches and so forth."
Katz says the jobs in Helena will be eliminated by the end of June of this year; that will leave about 15 employees at the office in Helena.
Helena employees who lose their jobs and are willing to relocate are encouraged to apply for similar jobs at the AmeriGas offices near Philadelphia, Katz said.
AmeriGas will provide severance packages and will hold outplacement seminars for all affected employees.
Energy Transfer sold Heritage Propane because it wants to invest in pipeline operations.
The transactions for the buy-out began last October.