BP Board to Decide on Tony Hayward’s Fate

BP’s Board of Directors will vote on whether to terminate CEO Tony Hayward at a meeting later today. The BP boss is expected to be voted off the oil-soaked island. From the BBC:

A statement issued by BP said a board meeting was being held on Monday and “no final decision has been made”. Mr Hayward is likely to be replaced by his American colleague, Bob Dudley, who has taken charge of the clean-up operation.

BP’s board are to sign off accounts, and these will also be discussed on Monday evening. The accounts will cover spill compensation and costs of up to £19bn, and may result in the worst quarterly loss for a UK firm. They are also likely to discuss terms of Mr Hayward’s severance package.

When he became chief executive in 2007, the 53 year-old told journalists his number-one task was to focus “laser-like” on safety and reliability. The explosion on the drilling rig off Louisiana on 20 April, which killed 11 workers and triggered the worst oil spill in the US, raised questions about his leadership.

Bob Dudley, who has been managing day-to-day operations in the Gulf, grew up in Mississippi, according to the BBC. From a PR perspective, he would be the ideal Hayward replacement.

Given Tony Hayward’s rock-bottom reputation as CEO of BP, I think the outcome of today’s vote will be easy to predict.