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BP (LON: BP) Restructures After Gulf Spill Settlement

Brian Hicks

Written By Brian Hicks

Posted November 26, 2012

BP (LON: BP) is engaged in far-reaching restructuring, partly to allow Chief Executive Bob Dudley greater freedom to work on helping the troubled oil giant recover from the Deepwater fiasco and its aftermath by relieving him from micromanagement duties.

The company hasn’t performed well on the market since the Deepwater spill drama, and Dudley has borne the brunt of criticism.

As the Chicago Tribune reports, the new phase of restructuring will see the current head of BP’s stateside operations, Lamar McKay, take over control of Upstream, a BP unit focused on exploration and production.

Just last week, BP acknowledged that it would pay $4.5 billion in penalties sought by the U.S. government and plead guilty to various charges of criminal misconduct. The company continues to face other charges and class action suits.

After replacing gaffe-prone former CEO, Tony Hayward, Dudley decided to break up BP’s former E&P division into separate units.

Hayward’s business model, analyses after Deepwater alleged, encouraged individual managers to seek profit at the cost of safety measures.

Dudley’s split-up was designed to move BP away from this decentralized structure involving independent business units. New measures are expected to move away from this even more.

The new restructuring restores a more centralized hierarchy along functional lines, similar to Exxon Mobil’s (NYSE: XOM) existing management structure, which will hopefully help BP’s fortunes.

BP’s London shares were down 1% before close on Monday.

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