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Bob Dudley, the chief executive of BP since 2010, is drafting plans to step down from his post in 2020, Reuters reported on Monday, quoting sources close to the UK oil supermajor.
Dudley, who became CEO at BP on October 1, 2010, succeeded Tony Hayward, who resigned after the Deepwater Horizon disaster that marred BP’s early years this decade.
This past Saturday, Sky News reported that Dudley is drawing up plans to retire from the CEO job within 12 months and has held discussions with the chairman of BP, Helge Lund, about the plans.
BP could announce Dudley’s decision to step down by the end of this year, and possibly as soon as by the end of October, when the supermajor is expected to report third-quarter results, sources in the City told Sky News.
It is not clear yet whether BP could make an announcement about Dudley’s successor at the same time at which it would announce his decision to step down, according to Sky News’ sources.
Dudley has reportedly said in private discussions that he wanted to retire from the CEO job at BP at the age of 65. He turned 64 in the middle of September.
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According to sources who spoke to Reuters and Sky News, the current chief executive of BP’s upstream business, Bernard Looney, and the BP group chief financial officer Brian Gilvary are widely regarded as front-runners to succeed Dudley as chief executive officer.
Dudley steered BP away from the brink after the Gulf of Mexico oil spill in 2010. Nearly a decade after the Deepwater Horizon disaster, BP bets big on the Gulf of Mexico to grow its global production of ‘high-margin oil’, as its executives say. Under Dudley, BP also secured shale assets in the United States after buying last year oil and gas assets in the Permian, the Eagle Ford, and Haynesville from BHP in what the UK supermajor described as a “transformational acquisition” and one of its biggest deals in the past two decades.
BP is also starting to pay attention to the climate issues that its shareholders and investors are raising. Earlier this month, Dudley said that BP was considering selling some heavily carbon-intensive oil projects and not developing others in order to have its business compatible with the Paris Climate Agreement.
By Tsvetana Paraskova for Oilprice.com
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Tsvetana is a writer for Oilprice.com with over a decade of experience writing for news outlets such as iNVEZZ and SeeNews.