Tullow chief operating officer to replace retiring CEO

  • Business & Finance

Oil and gas company Tullow Oil has made several changes to its management team, most notable of which is the promotion of current chief operating officer (COO) to the position of chief executive officer (CEO).

Tullow said on Wednesday that Paul McDade, the current COO, would be promoted to CEO following the company’s Annual General Meeting on April 26, 2017. This appointment follows an internal and external process led by Tullow’s Nominations Committee.

Aidan Heavey, the current CEO and founder of Tullow Oil, will relinquish his executive role and become the chairman of the Group for a transition period of up to two years after Simon Thompson, the board chairman, steps down from the board.

Thompson has been on Tullow’s board for six years and has spent the last five as chairman.

Paul McDade, COO and CEO designate, said: “I am deeply honored that the board has appointed me to succeed Aidan as Chief Executive Officer of Tullow. We have begun the vital process of deleveraging our balance sheet and our focus will now move to returning the business to growth as the recovery in the sector develops.”

Tullow said that Heavey’s appointment as non-executive chairman reflects the belief that a phased transition in the leadership of the company is appropriate. His tenure will not exceed two years from April 26, 2017, and his appointment is subject to a vote at the AGM.

Simon Thompson, chairman of Tullow Oil, said: “The board and I have long been aware of the need to plan carefully for Aidan’s retirement from Tullow as our founder and after 31 years as CEO. After careful consideration of the options, we are confident that this succession plan provides Tullow with the right combination of stability, continuity, and fresh-thinking.

“Paul has been an outstanding member of the board and has served Tullow with great distinction for 12 years as COO. With Aidan as chairman, Paul and Tullow will continue to benefit from the founder’s years of experience and deep understanding of the relationships that underpin our business in Africa.”

Aidan Heavey, CEO and chairman designate, added: “Simon has been chairman of Tullow during some of our most exciting but also some of our most challenging years, and I thank him for his help, guidance and advice throughout his tenure.

“Paul has run our business as COO since 2004 and has two major deepwater developments to his credit at Jubilee and TEN. I look forward to working with him closely during a transition period before assisting the board in finding my successor as chairman.”

Ann Grant, a senior independent director, will retire at the AGM after nine years of service on the board. Jeremy Wilson, a non-executive director of Tullow and chairman of the Remuneration Committee, will succeed Grant and take on the role of senior independent director.

Regarding the retirement of Ann Grant, Thompson said: “I would like to thank Ann for her outstanding contribution to the board for over nine years and wish Jeremy well in his new role.”

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