UK oil and gas major BG Group's announcement Thursday that it has appointed a new chief executive has been welcomed by analysts who said it resolves the long-running uncertainty over who would succeed the firm's current boss, Sir Frank Chapman, who in autumn 2011 announced his intention to step down in 2013.
BG Group said that it has chosen Chris Finlayson, currently executive director and managing director of BG Advance, to take over as chief executive Jan. 1, 2013.
In a brief research note Thursday, analysts at Canadian investment bank Canaccord Genuity commented that observers of BG Group "may initially view an internal appointment as a slight negative – following the recent issues over production guidance, there was increased expectation of an external hire. However, on further reflection we think investors should view the move as a positive."
Canaccord pointed out that Finlayson's role as head of BG Advance means he is responsible for the company's exploration team, capital projects program, contracts, procurement and technology. He has been with BG Group since mid-2010, and has had a 35-year career which included serving as a member of Royal Dutch Shell's E&P leadership team, as managing director of SPDC (Shell's Nigerian joint venture) and as executive vice president of Shell E&P Russia – delivering the Sakhalin 2 LNG project.
"Overall, we view the succession as positive, and it is helpful that he will assume the role as soon as next month," added Canaccord.
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