Commodities trading and mining company Glencore Xstrata (LON:GLEN) announced Thursday it has named Tony Hayward, the former chief executive of oil major BP ((NYSE:BP), who left the firm in disgrace over Gulf of Mexico disaster, to be its permanent chairman.
Hayward, who has been Glencore Xstrata’s interim chairman since Sir John Bond was ousted by shareholders last year, is also chief executive of London-listed oil company Genel Energy Plc (LON:GENL).
Ivan Glasenberg, Glencore’s chief executive, will continue to run the Swiss-based company, with Hayward serving as non-executive chairman.
The appointment is quite the comeback for Hayward, forced out of BP in July 2010 after the Gulf of Mexico disaster — the vastest marine oil spill in history. He was vilified across America after he said he wanted his “life back” in the aftermath of the explosion that killed 11 people and devastated the livelihoods of many others.
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After leaving BP, the executive co-founded Vallares Plc with Nat Rothschild to tap into Iraqi Kurdistan's oil riches. He later bought Turkey-based oil firm Genel Energy and merged it with his investment vehicle.
Hayward, who began his career as a geologist working in the North Sea, has said he intends to expand Genel by exploring for oil and gas in places like Somalia and and Morocco. However, there are questions about whether he will be able to do so now, as it is not clear he will retain his role as chief executive of Genel, with media reports suggesting he could leave within a year.
By Cecilia Jamasmie
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