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Exclusive - Genel Energy CFO to step down, search for chairman continues: sources
March 29, 2017 / 2:36 PM / 8 months ago

Exclusive - Genel Energy CFO to step down, search for chairman continues: sources

LONDON (Reuters) - Genel Energy (GENL.L) is set to lose its finance chief while still struggling to find a replacement for Chairman Tony Hayward, sources told Reuters, increasing pressure on the company after a second revision to its Kurdish oil reserves sent its shares sliding this week.

FILE PHOTO: Tony Hayward responds to questions during a panel debate at the Institute of Directors annual convention in London, Britain, September 27, 2016. REUTERS/Toby Melville/File Photo

Together with the collapse in oil prices since 2014, the former leader among international oil and gas exploration and production companies today faces a huge challenge as it shifts its focus to supplying gas to Turkey.

Hayward, a former head of BP (BP.L) and one of Genel’s co-founders, is planning to step down in June, but the succession issue remains open, with former BG Group boss Chris Finlayson no longer in the running, industry and company sources said.

Two other candidates are being considered and the new chairman is expected to be announced at Genel’s annual general meeting next month. Reuters first reported on Hayward’s planned departure last September.

CFO Ben Monaghan, a former senior banker who joined Genel in 2015, is expected to leave after Hayward’s departure but before the end of the year.

A Genel spokesman said the company considers succession planning carefully to ensure a smooth transition of key roles but that no decision has been made on the timing of any such transitions.‎

Hayward, who drew heavy criticism over his handling of the 2010 Deepwater Horizon disaster in the Gulf of Mexico while heading BP, next plans to set up a new oil and gas company focused on Latin America, sources have said.

Genel shares extended losses on Wednesday with a fall of 9.2 percent to 57.37 pence at 1404 GMT.

The company’s market value had collapsed to a record low on Tuesday after announcing its second downward revision of how much crude oil is held by its flagship Taq Taq field in Kurdistan.

Since listing in 2011 and claiming to be the largest independent UK-listed oil producer by reserves, Genel has been hit by a string of unsuccessful exploration campaigns in Africa and payment delays from the Kurdish Regional Government.

Over the past year Genel has shifted much of its focus to development of the Miran and Bina Bawi gas fields in Kurdistan. It aims to sell the gas into Turkey, one of the world’s fastest-growing markets, and is looking for a Turkish partner to develop the assets.

“We need to find the right successor for Tony and move on and relaunch the company,” a senior Genel source said.

Editing by David Goodman

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