BP could announce CEO change ahead of half-year results

17:44, July 26, 2010      

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Oil giant BP could announce the departure of Chief Executive Tony Hayward ahead of its half-year results on Tuesday, a number of media organizations quoted sources as saying.

Bob Dudley, the managing director who has had a better media profile since taking over the company's Gulf of Mexico oil spill response last month, is now the front-runner to succeed Hayward.

British newspaper Telegraph said it now appears almost certain that Hayward would announce his departure after negotiations on the details of his severance package over the weekend.

The Washington Post also reported that Hayward's departure from his job as BP's chief executive will top the agenda when the company's board of directors meets Monday night, citing "a source close to the company."

Hayward recognized that he has become a "a liability going forward" and is ready to step down, the source said on condition of anonymity.

The CEO change could be announced as early as Monday, the Associated Press quoted a U.S. official as saying.

Hayward has been working with BP since 1982. He began his career as a rig geologist and rose to group treasurer in 2000. He was chief executive for BP's upstream activities and member of the main board for several years before being appointed group chief executive in May 2007.

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