Tuesday, 25 January 2011

Robert Dudley Named New CEO of BP

Yesterday, BP took its first step toward trying to recreate its image in the wake of the blown well disaster in the Gulf of Mexico. As expected, BP announced that Robert Dudley would replace Tony Hayward as CEO of the company and that all current resources would be devoted to permanently plugging the leaking well and cleaning up the oil from the water and beaches that have been affected.

In addition to yesterday's announcement of a new CEO, BP also released its quarterly earnings numbers, which were solid in light of the fact that they absorbed massive charges in relation to costs likely be incurred while addressing the Gulf disaster.

Despite being replaced, Tony Hayward remains in good standing with the company and BP has moved him to their joint venture in Russia. Even though Hayward's handling of the Gulf disaster was admittedly clumsy and at times insensitive, his tenure as CEO of BP saw the company become more efficient and increase profits across the board. In fairness to Hayward, it's unlikely he had a firm grasp on the severity of the situation in the early days when information was volatile and often impossible to confirm.

Ultimately, however, this disaster occurred on his watch. And while it would be silly to believe that he could have stopped it in any way, his response to it certainly required a higher level of social acumen and tact, especially for a man in his position.

In addition to remaining with a BP-related venture, Hayward will also receive a large severance package totaling around 600,000 British pounds and will also have access to an ongoing pension fund and will retain BP stock.

By Buzzle Staff and Agencies
Published: 7/27/2010