Friday, May 15, 2009
Brits losing control over TNK-BP
May 13, 2009 - (UPI) - LONDON. British control over Russian oil venture TNK-BP is dwindling as negotiations to find a new chief executive continue to stagnate. Disputes over corporate direction from BP and Russian oligarchs represented by the Alfa, Access/Renova group erupted last year as former Chief Executive Robert Dudley fled Russia in July, citing harassment. Dudley stepped down last year, leaving his deputy, Tim Summers, as acting chief executive. His term was extended in April, though The Times of London reports German Khan, a member of the AAR group, is in fact leading the company. Tony Hayward, the chief executive at BP, traveled to Moscow in April, the Times reports, to discuss Dudley's replacement, but he came away from the meeting with different priorities. The Times reports the agreement to subdue the chief executive search suggests British influence over Russia's third-largest oil producer is waning. TNK-BP reported $1.5 billion in profits for the first quarter of 2009 and, despite the acrimonious relationship between both sides, the relationship still is considered cordial, the Times reports.