VIENNA, Oct 14 (Reuters) - OMV Chief Executive Gerhard Roiss will leave the Austrian energy group as of mid-2015 - nearly two years ahead of schedule - as part of a management shakeup which will also see OMV's gas business subsumed into a new division, OMV said.
Sources close to the company, which under Roiss focused on exploration projects in increasingly expensive markets, had told Reuters of infighting between Roiss and the head of OMV's gas division about the future of this segment.
Media commentary had been piling pressure on Roiss and the supervisory board to revamp the management of OMV, Austria's biggest company, which has seen its underlying operating profit shrink this year.
Employee representatives, who make up a third of OMV's supervisory board, have said the internal discord paralysed OMV and had urged major shareholders to step in.
Austrian state holding company OIAG owns a 31.5 percent stake in OMV, and Abu Dhabi's International Petroleum Investment Co (IPIC) owns nearly 25 percent.
OMV's supervisory board has started to identify candidates to replace Roiss, the company said in a statement released around 11 hours after the board started meeting on Tuesday.
The supervisory board and Roiss, who became CEO in 2011, had agreed he would resign, OMV said, but gave no reason.
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