BP Shortlists Internal Candidates for CEO Position
Posted 19/12/2023 18:33
BP's board is reportedly considering three internal candidates to replace Bernard Looney as CEO, with interim CEO Murray Auchincloss and two senior female executives, Carol Howle and Emma Delaney, in the running, according to three company and industry sources. The people and governance committee, led by BP Chairman Helge Lund, is said to be weighing internal and external candidates, with a decision expected in the coming weeks. The appointment is anticipated to be announced in the first quarter of the next year.
Looney's resignation in September, prompted by a failure to disclose relationships with employees, left BP without a clear succession plan. The committee's focus on internal candidates suggests support for the company's current strategy, emphasizing carbon emission reduction, renewable energy, and clean fuel capacity growth, while reducing oil and gas output by 2030. An internal appointment would symbolize board backing for this strategic direction.
Auchincloss, Howle, and Delaney, all part of BP's leadership team appointed by Looney in 2020, are considered for the role. Auchincloss is seen as the most likely choice, given his experience leading the company and working closely with investors and the board. He played a crucial role in shaping strategic changes implemented by Looney in February, slowing down BP's transition from oil and gas and reducing spending on renewables.
While Auchincloss is seen as a steady choice symbolically, his close association with Looney could be a potential drawback. Howle, with over 20 years of experience at BP, and Delaney, who joined in 1995, are also being considered. A decision on Looney's successor is expected to be made public in early 2023. The company has not commented on specific candidates or the ongoing process.