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‘Difficult time’ for oil workers as Shell workforce is slashed

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By GREG CHRISTISONPUBLISHED: 22:22, Wed, May 25, 2016 

The move, announced yesterday, is a result of the firm’s £35billion merger with the BG Group and the prolonged slump in oil prices. 

A total of 475 positions will be lost from the company’s UK and Ireland upstream business, which deals primarily with exploration, by the end of the year. 

All job losses are expected to affect Scotland – home to around 2,200 Shell employees – with most coming from the firm’s Aberdeen headquarters. Around 40 offshore posts will be cut and there will also be losses at St Fergus Gas Terminal, in Aberdeenshire, and the firm’s plant at Mossmorran, in Fife.

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Shell shareholders to vote on pay

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Screen Shot 2016-05-12 at 11.17.55BOSSES at Royal Dutch Shell will face shareholders at the group’s annual general meeting tomorrow amid concern over the chief executive’s “unacceptable” £4million pay deal.

Investors have been urged to vote against the firm’s remuneration report in protest at Ben van Beurden’s pay for 2015, even though it marked a significant reduction from the £18.6million he was paid in 2014 in the wake of plunging profits.

Shell’s latest annual report revealed boss Mr van Beurden’s total pay for last year was £4.3million – a 77 per cent fall on 2014 after the tumbling cost of crude took its toll on the group.

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BG Group in ‘excellent’ shape for Shell’s £35bn takeover

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BG GROUP said it was in “excellent” shape ahead of a £35billion takeover by former rival Shell as it ramped up production and drove down costs in the face of sliding oil prices.

The FTSE 100 oil and gas group reported a surge in output in Australia and Brazil – key growth markets identified by Shell to justify the deal – beating its target to deliver a daily average of 704,000 barrels of oil per day last year, up 16 per cent on the previous year.

Volumes increased by 20 per cent in the fourth quarter.

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Shell-BG deal set to get the green light this week

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By GEOFF HOSun, Jan 24, 2016

Since the Anglo-Dutch oil giant unveiled its recommended takeover offer for BG last April, the price of crude oil has continued its descent and is now 41 per cent lower than when the deal was announced.

Screen Shot 2016-01-24 at 08.40.14On Friday the price of Brent crude oil closed at $31.18 (£21.86).

The collapse in the price of oil has led a number of Shell’s key investors, such as Standard Life Investments, to question whether or not it should proceed.

Despite their concerns, a number of them also own shares in BG and are believed to be prepared to approve the deal, reasoning that the two firms would be stronger together.

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Shell chief executive Ben van Beurden needs a Christmas miracle

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By GEOFF HO: Dec 27, 2015

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With the price of oil languishing below $40 per barrel Ben van Beurden needs a miracle

Screen Shot 2015-12-28 at 20.29.12With the price of oil languishing below $40 per barrel he requires prices to start rising in order to save his £47billion takeover of BG Group. When Van Beurden announced the deal in April, a number of Shell’s investors had doubts because of the valuations involved. Those doubts have since become full-blown fears, as the oil price has fallen through the floor.

To be fair to Shell, there is merit to the deal. BG will provide it with quality assets and enough free cash flow to reinforce its under-pressure dividend. It has also identified billions of cost savings. However, the takeover is predicated on the oil price being at $60 to $70 a barrel and the slump has completely changed the economics of the BG deal.

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BP and Shell slip up on Crude bottom

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ROYAL Dutch Shell and BP are set to blame the weak oil price for dramatic falls in third-quarter pre-tax profits and revenues, analysts say.

By GEOFF HO: Sun, Oct 25, 2015

The price of crude oil has nearly halved over the past 12 months because of a Saudi Arabia-led effort by the Opec cartel to crush competition from US shale oil operators. 

On Tuesday, BP is expected to say its third-quarter profits have slumped 57.5 per cent to $2.2billion (£1.4billion), with revenues down 47.6 per cent to $49.2billion (£31.9billion), even though analysts believe that its refining, processing and retail divisions have performed well. 

On Thursday, arch rival Shell is also likely to produce a weak set of results. 

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Oil giant Shell set for further cost cuts

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Screen Shot 2015-01-12 at 08.45.23By GEOFF HO: Published Sunday January 25, 2015  

Royal Dutch Shell chief executive Ben van Beurden will outline how the company plans to deal with the collapse in crude oil prices when he unveils its results on Thursday.

The oil giant is expected to reveal further cost-cutting measures alongside a 4.6 per cent fall in its 2014 pre-tax profits to $35 billion (£23.4 billion).

Earlier this month, Shell dropped a $6.5 billion (£4.3 billion) project in Qatar due to the impact of falling oil and gas prices.

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How could Shell have got it so wrong on oil? 

Screen Shot 2014-10-30 at 09.22.43In October of this year, just 9 weeks ago, when oil was at over $90 a barrel, Shell CEO Ben van Beurden expressed his confidence that oil would return to what he described as “very robust” pricing. He said that the oil price had been remarkably stable and that in the short term, Shell has a trading strategy to inoculate itself from the swings and “maybe even make money out of it.”

In view of the immediate subsequent slump in the oil price and the anticipated disastrous impact on Shell, he may now wish he had been less confident about the prospect of actually making money out of a downward swing. 

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UK News Reports Royal Dutch Shell Quarterly Result

Screen Shot 2014-10-31 at 15.37.24DAILY EXPRESS: Oil giant Shell floats as prices sink

Extracts

ROYAL Dutch Shell unleashed an industry-beating rise in quarterly profit yesterday, despite falling oil prices, and vowed to keep slashing less-lucrative projects.

Finance chief Simon Henry said: “It’s quite likely we’ll take a very close look at investment levels where we have flexibility if we see oil price weakness persisting.”

FULL ARTICLE

Screen Shot 2014-10-31 at 15.40.26DAILY MAIL: Shell posts forecast-busting profit rise of 31pc despite slump in oil prices

Extracts

Shell has managed to weather the sharp drop in the price of oil since June, announcing forecast-busting results for the third quarter.

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Shell CEO dubious prediction on oil prices

Today we have another forecast from a Chief Executive of Royal Dutch Shell Plc, no doubt based on an assessment by the crystal ball gazers at Shell, the famed Scenarios team. Is it a case of wishful thinking on the part of Shell? Can we have faith in the prediction made by the current CEO?

By John Donovan

Today we have another forecast from a Chief Executive of Royal Dutch Shell Plc, no doubt based on an assessment by the crystal ball gazers at Shell, the famed Scenarios team. 

According to Catherine Boyle of CNBC, Ben van Beurden, Shell’s current CEO is confident that oil will return to “very robust” pricing in the long-term.

This is despite the fact that as a result of increased production by Saudi Arabia and the USA, Brent crude dropped to less than $93 a barrel last week, the lowest price for two years. 

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Oil giant Royal Dutch Shell to see profits slump by 38 per cent

Screen Shot 2014-02-10 at 16.29.29Extract from a Sunday Express article by: Helen Massy-Beresford published 

Royal Dutch Shell is expected to report that its profits have slumped 38 per cent year on year to $4.6 billion (£2.7 billion), when it unveils its first-quarter results on Wednesday. As part of his turnaround plans van Beurden has pledged to improve cash flow and cut costs.

FULL ARTICLE

How much reliance can be placed on Royal Dutch Shell predictions?

Screen Shot 2014-02-13 at 17.22.27How much reliance can be placed on predictions emerging from Shell scenarios team? Very little if past accuracy of Shell predictions is any guide. Six years ago the then head of Royal Dutch Shell, the clueless Jeroen van der Veer predicted that the world would begin to run out of oil within 7 years – that’s next year. Since then, the whole outlook for oil and gas reserves has changed dramatically as a result of fracking and the US will surpass Saudi as the worlds top oil producer by 2016.

By John Donovan

Bloomberg news has published an article today under the headline Shell Sees Stable Oil Price for 20 Years With Volatility Bursts

Extract

In Shell’s “tighter” supply scenarios, crude prices could steadily increase over the 20 next years, while still going through periods of volatility that could see Brent falling to $70 a barrel, Bentham said.

How much reliance can be placed on predictions emerging from Shell scenarios team?

Very little if past accuracy of Shell predictions is any guide.

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BP and Shell profits set to fall by billions

Shell will report that its net earnings have fallen 25 per cent to £4.9 billion, due to its struggles with spills, theft and disruption at its Nigerian operations, as well as higher exploration costs and a weak refining and petrol market. “Unfortunately, ongoing issues in Nigeria, higher exploration charges, losses in Upstream Americas plus a weak downstream environment do not augur well,” Investec said.

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BRITISH oil giants BP and Royal Dutch Shell are set to report plunging third-quarter profits this week, with both expected to say that they have been hit by weak refining margins and production outages, according to City analysts.

By: Helen Massy-Beresford

Aside from tougher market conditions, analysts believe BP’s Gulf of Mexico oil spill legal battles will weigh on its results expected on Tuesday. They predict increased US legal provisions will contribute to profits falling 37 per cent to £4.9 billion.Investec forecasts BP’s arch-rival Shell will report that its net earnings have fallen 25 per cent to £4.9 billion, due to its struggles with spills, theft and disruption at its Nigerian operations, as well as higher exploration costs and a weak refining and petrol market.

“Unfortunately, ongoing issues in Nigeria, higher exploration charges, losses in Upstream Americas plus a weak downstream environment do not augur well,” Investec said.

Deutsche Bank said challenges in Nigeria meant they viewed the quarter with “continuing trepidation” saying that in refining “Shell’s outsized footprint combined with the usual bout of unplanned downtime looks set to cost them dearly.”

Resources exploration firm BG Group, which was part of British Gas owner Centrica until 1997, is expected to say on Thursday that its profits for the third quarter have fallen 20 per cent to £1.8 billion.

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Links to a selection of Shell related articles

Screen Shot 2013-08-29 at 17.22.26Links to a selection of current Shell related articles kindly supplied by a regular contributor

Montepeque of Platts Caught in Battle Over Oil Assessments: Bloomberg: The oil-market investigation became public in May when European … Royal Dutch Shell Plc (RDSA), three of Europe’s largest oil companies, …

Shell will keep oil shale R&D, sell its other Colorado assets: Denver Business Journal (blog)-Aug 23, 2013; Royal Dutch Shell’s U.S. subsidiary will keep its oil shale research project going in Colorado, but the company’s other assets in the …

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Shell ‘shuts down £8.3bn project in China’

Royal Dutch Shell is likely to face questions over the future of its operations in China after sources claimed an £8.3bn project in the country had been quietly shelved. The cancellation of the project in the eastern city of Taizhou will raise doubts about Shell’s bold push into China and its partnership with CNPC. Shell has assiduously courted the state-owned giant, only to see CNPC swept up in a political purge which has seen at least five current or former executives investigated by the Communist party.

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The news raises questions about Shell’s position in China Photo: GETTY

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By , in Beijing: 8:30PM BST 10 Sep 2013

The tie-up with China National Petroleum Corp (CNPC), the country’s largest energy producer, and Qatar Petroleum to build a refinery and petrochemical plant is believed to have been suspended after losing political support.

The cancellation of the project in the eastern city of Taizhou will raise doubts about Shell’s bold push into China and its partnership with CNPC.

Shell has assiduously courted the state-owned giant, only to see CNPC swept up in a political purge which has seen at least five current or former executives investigated by the Communist party.

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Blaze hits Shell plant in Texas

Screen Shot 2013-08-20 at 00.16.26 Published: Tue, August 20, 2013

ROYAL DUTCH SHELL has shut down parts of a refinery in Port Arthur, Texas, after a fire broke out following a £6.4billion expansion scheme.

Shell closed units at the Motiva refinery, which is run by a joint venture of the oil giant and Saudi Refining, after the second blaze in a week is said to have started near the biggest of the plant’s three crude oil units.

The first attempt to start the unit, at the end of a five year upgrade of the refinery, was hampered by a chemical leak in June 2012.

The unit has been running at reduced rates since it began production early this year.

The company may shut the crude unit in the autumn of 2014 to fix the problems.

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Shell shock as new boss is appointed

ROYAL DUTCH SHELL sprang another surprise on the City yesterday by naming its head of refining Ben van Beurden as its new chief executive to succeed Peter Voser next January.

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Published: Wed, July 10, 2013

Dutchman Van Beurden, 55, who has been with the Anglo-Dutch oil giant for 30 years but only appointed to the board in January as boss of its downstream operations, had not been touted as a likely contender to replace Voser, whose decision to stand down after less than five years in the top job had stunned investors.

Analysts had focused on chief financial officer Simon Henry and other divisional heads including Marvin Odum and Andy Brown as potential successors, although Shell also reviewed outside candidates.

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All the worst Shell traits – secrecy, haughtiness, inertia

 From our Shell News Archive Sunday 31 October, 2004

The fallout from the Shell reserves fraud continues…

The Independent On Sunday (UK): Business View: Shell’s real location problem is finding more black stuff: “The misreporting of reserves scandal showed all the worst Shell traits – secrecy, haughtiness, inertia.”: “So what’s the hurry? Was it because Shell had to admit that it had uncovered another 900 million barrels of doubtful crude in its reserves and was likely to uncover 600 million more?”

Sunday Express (UK): Shell boardroom changes backfire on reserves news: “ONE OF the world’s most influential financial firms has given the thumbs down to an announcement from Shell it is to end its 97-year-old dual board structure.”: “…financial ratings agency Standard & Poor’s said it had adjusted Shell’s investment rating downwards to “creditwatch negative”, a status which implies there may be more bad news to come from the company.”

Mail on Sunday (UK):  Shell bosses in a charm offensive: “The Board, headed by Jeroen van der Veer, will see thousands of staff to explain the proposed changes and shore up the mood of the employees damaged by scandals over Shell’s inflated oil reserves.”: “Last week, Shell was forced to downgrade its estimates of proven oil reserves for the fifth time this year. Reserves are now a third lower than originally thought”

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A DREADFUL DAY FOR SHELL SHAREHOLDERS, ESPECIALLY UK SHELL SHAREHOLDERS

FROM OUR OCTOBER 2004 SHELL NEWS ARCHIVE

Friday 29 October, 2004 – A DREADFUL DAY FOR SHAREHOLDERS IN SHELL TRANSPORT AND TRADING COMPANY PLC

The Times (UK): The Hague for head office: “ALTHOUGH it maintains otherwise, Shell is effectively going Dutch…”: “From May, the big decisions will be taken by a new board in The Hague, which has seven Dutch members and only four Britons.”: “…from 2006 it will hold AGMs only in The Hague.”

The Times (UK): Fear of new Shell reserves downgrade: “ROYAL Dutch/Shell yesterday raised fears that it may have to write down its reserves by more than 1.5 billion barrels…”: “With less than 60 per cent of its reservoir audit completed, Shell was unable yesterday to put a ceiling on the potential downgrade of its reserves…”

Daily Telegraph (UK): Dutch chiefs take helm of merged Shell: “The radical move, which needs to be approved by shareholders, is likely to be seen as a Dutch takeover of the energy giant…”: “The news was overshadowed by yet more revelations about the company’s “proven” reserves…”

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OIL GIANTS BACK IN BLACK AS CRUDE RISES

By Geoff Ho: Sunday October 28,2012

OIL giant BP is expected to return to profit this week when it reports its third-quarter results thanks to the rising oil price, while arch-rival Royal Dutch Shell is also set to announce improved profits.

BP is expected to make a net profit of $4 billion (£2.5 billion) for the three months to September 30, which would return it to profitability after registering a $1.3 billion loss in the preceding quarter. The oil giant will unveil its third-quarter results on Tuesday.

City analysts expect Royal Dutch Shell to report a net profit of $7.3bn, an increase of 79.7 per cent on the second quarter, when it announces its third-quarter results on Thursday.

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SHELL’S ANNUS HORRIBILIS

FROM OUR SHELL NEWS ARCHIVE SEPT 2004

Daily Express (UK): SHELL’S ANNUS HORRIBILIS

Published 23 Sept 2004

Jan 9, 2004: Reserves downgraded; shares slump

Mar 7: Chairman Sir Philip Watts ousted

Apr 19: E-mails about ‘lying’ revealed

Apr 24: FSA launches probe

Jun 6: Shell forced to speed up structural reform

Jul 29: Fined £84m by US and UK watchdogs

Sep 22: New investment strategy

SCOTTISH OIL RIGS IN DIRE STRAITS

Mr Campbell insisted it is only a matter of time before there is another major tragedy in the North Sea. He said: “According to public domain data there were 85 gas releases and 443 dangerous occurrences last year. If you are getting 85 gas leaks that’s one and a half, or two, leaks a week. The probability of an undesirable event is very high.”


CLICK ON IMAGE TO ENLARGE

By John Donovan

The Sunday Express has today published an article under the headline: “Rusting rigs spark fears of oil tragedy” (above newspaper article) and “SCOTTISH OIL RIGS IN DIRE STRAITS” (online version).

The newspaper approached us for assistance and we were happy to supply extensive information, including the revealing letter we obtained from the Health & Safety Executive that is mentioned in the article.

We also put the Sunday Express journalist Paula Murray into contact with Bill Campbell, the retired HSE Group Auditor of Shell International to led the safety audit team on Shell North Sea platforms in 1999 which exposed a “Touch F*** All” maintenance culture with bodged repairs and falsified safety records. A more recent report (in 2008) by upstreamonline revealed that even the oil rig lifeboats were not seaworthy.

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BOSSES’ SOARING PAY IS SLAMMED

Shell is often at odds with institutional investors over the generous pay packages it gives to its executives, such as boss Peter Voser, who last year took home £4.6 million in pay and bonuses.

By Tracey Boles and Geoff Ho: Sunday May 15,2011

THE pay of top earners is spiralling out of control, a high-level report will warn tomorrow, as investors prepare to tackle three of Britain’s biggest companies over excessive remuneration.

The independent inquiry into high pay across both the public and private sectors, says that it is climbing “at an alarming rate”.

The High Pay Commission will also warn in its report, out tomorrow, that Britain is on course for levels of inequality not seen since Victorian times.

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SHELL SURGES BUT BP FAILS TO CASH IN ON OIL PRICES

Sunday April 24,2011
By Tracey Boles

A DIP in production is expected to stop BP reaping the full benefit of the high oil price in its first-quarter results, out this week.

But arch-rival Royal Dutch Shell is forecast to enjoy a surge in first-quarter earnings on the back of the oil price which averaged $105 (£64) per barrel in the three-month period.

First-quarter profits at crisis-hit BP are expected to be broadly flat at $5.6 billion (£3.4 billion).

Analysts at Charles Stanley said: “Production volumes could be some 7 per cent lower and as a result, BP will have less leverage from higher oil prices which are some 32 per cent higher than a year ago.”

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The Times: Shell chief fears oil shortage in seven years

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THE TIMES

Carl Mortished, World Business Editor

January 25, 2008

World demand for oil and gas will outstrip supply within seven years, according to Royal Dutch Shell.

The oil multinational is predicting that conventional supplies will not keep pace with soaring population growth and the rapid pace of economic development.

Jeroen van der Veer, Shell’s chief executive, said in an e-mail to the company’s staff this week that output of conventional oil and gas was close to peaking. He wrote: “Shell estimates that after 2015 supplies of easy-to-access oil and gas will no longer keep up with demand.”

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Daily Express: Boss in Shell scandal starts legal fightback

Daily Express (UK): Boss in Shell scandal starts legal fightback

“… Watts’ counsel, David Pannick, claimed Watts could be easily identified by any “reasonable reader”. This was because the notice referred to Shell’s annual report, signed off by Watts, which contained false reserves statements, and to a Shell-commissioned report into the scandal, naming him among others. This had led to “contemptuous press coverage”.

Published by Daily Express 26 July 2005

By Andrew Johnson

SIR PHILIP WATTS, ousted as Shell’s boss in the oil reserves scandal, yesterday fired the opening shot against the Financial Services Authority in the fight to clear his name.

His lawyers told a preliminary hearing of the Financial Services and Markets Tribunal the City watchdog had infringed his rights by identifying him in a potentially damaging way when explaining why it had fined Shell £17million for market abuse. He should have been given an advance look at the notice to answer criticisms, they said.

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Daily Express: Shell pays £52m to help settle reserves actions

Daily Express: Shell pays £52m to help settle reserves actions

Posted Tuesday 19 July 2005

By Andrew Johnson

Published 13 July 2005

SHELL is close to settling one of the three major class actions it was facing in the US in the wake of last year’s reserves scandal.

The Anglo-Dutch oil giant has agreed to pay, subject to court approval, $90 million (£52 million) to a clutch of pension funds run for its US staff.

It is the latest move by the group to draw a line under the affair which saw nearly 6 billion barrels wiped from its reserves which had been artificially inflated.

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Daily Express: Shell Chief’s scientific outlook

Daily Express: Shell Chief’s scientific outlook

Friday 24 June 2005

City & Business Editor: Stephen Kahn: email: [email protected]

Article by Andrew Johnson

CHIEF EXECUTIVE Jeroen van der Veer is to beef up Shell’s science and technology work as part of moves to show there is life after the oil giant’s disastrous recent past.

Outlining where he would like the company to be in 1o years, van der Veer said innovation would play a crucial role in giving it a competitive edge.

The move comes ahead of the company’s annual meeting on Tuesday, when shareholders are expected to rubber-stamp a revamp of Shell’s three-board, two company structure to a single board and company.

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Shell News Wednesday, 2 February 2005

Shell News Archive Sunday 28 November, 2004

Shell News Archive Sunday 28 November, 2004

AFX Europe (Focus): Russia’s Gazprom likely to join Sakhalin 2 gas/oil project – report: “Sakhalin Energy, a company based in Yzhno-Sakhalinsk, is promoting the project and is owned 55 pct by Royal Dutch/Shell Group, 25 pct by Mitsui & Co and 20 pct by Mitsubishi Corp.“ (ShellNews.net) 28 Nov 04

Daily Express (UK): Fresh oil reserves fears as Shell puts off Agm: “SCANDAL-STRUCK Shell sparked fears of yet further reserves downgrades by announcing it had been forced to put back the annual meeting which will determine the oil giant’s future.”: “The latest announcement inevitably fuelled speculation a further significant reserves downgrade was in the offing.”: “A criminal investigation and class actions are continuing in the United States.” (ShellNews.net) Posted 28 Nov 04

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From our Shell News Archive 2 November 2004

FSA urges tribunal to reject Shell boss appeal

Daily Express (UK): FSA urges tribunal to reject Shell boss appeal

“The reserves crisis is being investigated by criminal authorities in the US, where Shell is facing civil actions for millions of pounds.”

19 Oct 2004

CITY watchdog the Financial Services Authority is urging an independent tribunal to dismiss an appeal by former Shell boss Sir Philip Watts.

It believes the Financial Services and Markets Tribunal should reject Watts’s claims that it identified him, in contravention of its own rules, when explaining the reasons for fining the oil giant £17 million over its reserves fiasco this year.

In a statement yesterday, the regulator said the tribunal should first decide whether Watts was “identified and prejudiced” when the fine was issued.

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SHELL’S ANNUS HORRIBILIS

FROM OUR SHELL NEWS ARCHIVE SEPT 2004

Daily Express (UK): SHELL’S ANNUS HORRIBILIS

Published 23 Sept 2004

Jan 9, 2004: Reserves downgraded; shares slump

Mar 7: Chairman Sir Philip Watts ousted

Apr 19: E-mails about ‘lying’ revealed

Apr 24: FSA launches probe

Jun 6: Shell forced to speed up structural reform

Jul 29: Fined £84m by US and UK watchdogs

Sep 22: New investment strategy

Training is the key to avoiding new Shell fiasco

Daily Express: Training is the key to avoiding new fiasco: “SHELL has so far trained more than 2,000 staff to ensure the way they book future oil reserves will meet regulations laid down by the US watchdog, the Securities and Exchange Commission.”

Posted 24 Sept 04

SHELL has so far trained more than 2,000 staff to ensure the way they book future oil reserves will meet regulations laid down by the US watchdog, the Securities and Exchange Commission.

Exploration and production chief Malcolm Brinded said the group also planned to have more than 3,000 employees versed in SEC compliance tactics by the end of this month.

It was a failure to comply 1 with SEC guidelines, partly the result of slack internal and external controls, that led to the shock reserves downgrade earlier this year. The firm has also hired a series of external reserves auditors to ensure the debacle will not happen again.

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Shell pumps in £25bn to restore reputation

Daily Express: Shell pumps in £25bn to restore reputation

By Andrew Johnson

Posted 24 Sept 04

OIL GIANT Shell is to step up investment by 20 per cent to $45billion (£25billion) for the next three years in a major shake-up designed to restore the group’s battered reputation.

More than $34billion has been earmarked for the group’s exploration and production arm, the division at the centre of the scandal which saw nearly 4.5 billion barrels wiped off the Anglo-Dutch oil giant’s reserves.

The focus is on bringing oil and gas fields on line and turning potential into production. However, $4.5billion will be spent searching for oil resources, an area in which Shell has under-invested until recently.

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Daily Express: FAT CATS REWARD: SIR PHILIP Watts

Daily Express: FAT CATS REWARD: SIR PHILIP Watts

His deputy, Dutchman Walter van der Vijver, repeatedly warned him of the overstatement and finally exploded in an angry e-mail last November that he was “sick and tired of lying about the extent of our reserves”.

Published 28 August 2004

Company: Shell

Payoff: £1m

Anglo-Dutch oil giant Shell shocked stock markets in January by admitting that it had overstated its proven gas and oil reserves by more than 20 per cent, the equivalent of a mind-boggling 4.47 billion barrels. Shell, long considered a safe haven by private investors and pension funds, saw £3bn wiped off its share value in the subsequent furore. Almost everybody with a pension will have been hit by the fallout.

Chairman Watts initially claimed he first heard about the shortfall at the end of 2003 but it was later reported that he was warned about the dangers in February 2002. His deputy, Dutchman Walter van der Vijver, repeatedly warned him of the overstatement and finally exploded in an angry e-mail last November that he was “sick and tired of lying about the extent of our reserves”.

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Sunday Express: Shell cuts back on forecourts to boost production

Sunday Express: Shell cuts back on forecourts to boost production

“managers hoped the new strategy would draw a line under the reserves-misreporting scandal which triggered the departure of three of Shell’s bosses earlier this year.”

By Robin Pagnamenta

22 August 04

SHELL is preparing to unveil a major long-term’ business strategy next month which insiders say will result in disposals and acquisitions.

The thrust of the Anglo-Dutch oil giant’s plan, to be revealed on September 22, will be to increase the company’s focus on long-term on exploration and production while reducing its retail presence, especially in mature markets.

Angus Mcphail, oil analyst at ING Financial Markets in Edinburgh, pointed out Shell had already begun taking steps in this direction. Last week, the group announced the sale of 900 petrol stations in Argentina. In recent months it has also disposed of hundreds of stations in Peru, Spain and Portugal. The cash raised will be used to fund oil and gas field acquisitions in Shell’s exploration and production division, the so-called “upstream” end of the business.

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Daily Express: Shell faces takeover challenge from Total

Daily Express: Shell faces takeover challenge from Total

“THE turmoil at Shell has triggered speculation that it could be vulnerable to a takeover or merger”

16 August 04

THE turmoil at Shell has triggered speculation that it could be vulnerable to a takeover or merger, with France’s Total tipped as a contender.

Shell has been rocked this year by revelations that its oil and gas reserves were 20 per cent lower than thought.

The crisis claimed the scalps of three senior executives^ including chairman Sir Philip Watts and the head of exploration Walter van de Vijver.

It has also raised questions about the independence of Shell which has remained on the sidelines while the industry has seen a wave of mergers and takeovers including Exxon’s purchase of Mobil.

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Sunday Express: All’s well with Cairn in the Indian desert

Sunday Express: All’s well with Cairn in the Indian desert

It was an act of stupidity… You don’t sell off your golden eggs like that. Shell’s loss is Cairn’s gain.”: “Oil minnow’s £4m field is worth billions”

Oil minnow’s £4m field is worth billions, writes Robin Pagnamenta

15 August 2004

THE contrast between the fortunes of Shell and oil minnow Cairn Energy could not be starker. While Shell has been battling to soothe investor concerns about governance and its long-term supplies of oil and gas, Cairn has been moving from strength to strength.

Shares in the Edinburgh-based exploration company have soared since January when it revealed its 5,000 sq km field in India’s Rajasthan desert contained a major oil prospect.

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WHY SHELL MUST ACT NOW TO CALM TROUBLED WATERS

SUNDAY EXPRESS: WHY SHELL MUST ACT NOW TO CALM TROUBLED WATERS

“But restructure may not be enough after scandal, resignation and fines, reports Robin Pagnamenta”

But restructure may not be enough after scandal, resignation and fines, reports Robin Pagnamenta

JEROEN VAN DE VEER smiled broadly in the cavernous interior of the New York Stock Exchange last week as he rang the opening bell for trading. The bespectacled Royal Dutch/Shell chairman was celebrating the 50th anniversary of the firm’s listing.

For perhaps the first time since his emergency appointment five months ago — after Sir Phil Watts was sacked after a misreported oil reserves scandal — van de Veer must have felt he was being feted rather than assaulted from all sides.

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Daily Express: Shell scandal boss wins £2.5m payoff

Daily Express: Shell scandal boss wins £2.5m payoff

“I am becoming sick and tired about lying about the extent of our reserves issues and the downward revisions that need to be done because of far too aggressive/optimistic bookings.”

By Andrew Johnson

THE former Shell exploration and production boss who admitted lying about the company’s reserves of oil has been awarded a pay-off worth €3.8 million (£2.5 million).

Walter van de Vijver will be given €1.9 million now and the rest after investigations into the scandal, depending on his co-operation with them and their results.

Van de Vijver and ex-chairman Sir Philip Watts stepped down from the Anglo-Dutch oil giant’s board “by mutual consent” in March after an internal inquiry into what eventually resulted in a 4.5 billion-barrel downgrade to the company’s reserves.

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DAILY EXPRESS: BUMBLING SHELL BORDERS ON FARCE

DAILY EXPRESS: BUMBLING SHELL BORDERS ON FARCE

“HAPPY memories of Peter Sellers’ portrayal of the bumbling Inspector Clouseau”

STEPHEN KAHN
CITY EDITOR
13 August 2004

HAPPY memories of Peter Sellers’ portrayal of the bumbling Inspector Clouseau were brought to mind yesterday in Shell’s official response to talk that a merger of its British and Dutch companies is on the cards. This would be a much more radical step than simply to unify the two boards in its ongoing bid to pacify shareholders in the wake of the oil reserves scandal.

“Nothing’s being ruled in or ruled out,” said a spokesman for the troubled oil giant. In a cod French accent it would have been a turn of phrase worthy of the great detective himself.

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Sunday Express: Shell tipped to join Baltic gas pipeline

Sunday Express: Shell tipped to join Baltic gas pipeline: “Shell is thought to be the most likely partner.”

By Robin Pagnamenta

8 August 2004

GAZPROM, the Russian energy giant, is seeking a UK partner for an ambitious multi-billion-pound plan to supply Siberian gas to western Europe via a pipeline across the Baltic Sea.

Gazprom is already understood to have approached Royal Dutch/Shell, BP and Centrica. Although no company has committed to the project, Shell is thought to be the most likely partner.

US investment bank Goldman Sachs is said to be advising on the deal, according to energy industry sources.

The pipeline is expected to cost up to $6 billion (£3.3 billion) and would involve the construction of a 1,875-mile link from northern Russia to Germany with offshoots to the UK, Finland and Sweden. Construction is unlikely to be completed before 2010.

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Naval officer son of oil king missing

DAILY EXPRESS: Naval officer son of oil king missing: 1 October 1940 Page 3

EXTRACT

Naval officer son of oil king missing

Lieutenant Henry Deterding, R.N.V.R. reported missing while serving with the Fleet Air Arm, yesterday, is the son of the late Sir Henri Deterding, the oil king and the man Hitler once described as “the great friend of the Germans.” Sir Henri died in Switzerland last year, and he was buried at his estate at Dobbin, Mecklenburg. A wreath was sent by Hitler.

Oil king will be buried in Germany

Daily Express: Oil King will be buried in Germany: 7 February 1939 Page 11

Oil king will be buried in Germany

Daily Express Correspondent

GENEVA. Monday.- The two sons of Sit Henri Deterding, the oil magnate, who died on Saturday, were expected to fly to St. Moritz yesterday, but arrived tonight by train with other relatives.

After meeting Lady Deterding, they decided that their father should be buried on his estate at Dobbin, Mecklenburg, North Germany. The family will leave tomorrow morning.

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OIL KING MOVED HIS MILLIONS

Daily Express 7 February 1939 page 11

Divorced, went to live in Germany

Daily Express Staff Reporter

SIR HENRI DETERDING, the oil king, once estimated to have a personal fortune of £25,000,000, has left practically nothing in England.

FULL ARTICLE: Daily Express 6 Feb 1939 Page11

Deterding millions in Germany

Daily Express Front Page article 6 February 1939

Deterding millions in Germany

THE personal fortune of Sir Henri Deterding, multi-millionaire oil king, who died after a heart attack on Saturday, is believed to be in Germany, where he went to live after his divorce in 1936.

PAGE ELEVEN

Sir Henri Deterding, Oil King, To Resign

Daily Express: Sir Henri Deterding, Oil King, To Resign: Front Page: 26 October 1936

Sir Henri, himself a mystery man, has chosen another mystery man to succeed him…

Napoleonic Audacity

He became Director-General of the Royal Dutch company…

Sir Henri, who retains his seat on the board, is 70, Dutch born and a naturalised Englishman.

NEW ATTACK ON SIR H. DETERDING

Daily Express: NEW ATTACK ON SIR H. DETERDING: 16 April 1932

Extracts:

I had shown Sir Henri Deterding head of the Royal Dutch Petroleum Company, a translation of a vigorous attack on him published in Paris today in “Forces,” the financial newspaper…

Now “Forces,” reprinting the exclusive interview published last Monday in the “Daily Express,” accuses Sir Henri of being an enemy of France, of withholding vital statements of his companies investments and of secret dealings…

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MYSTERY DOCUMENT IN GERMAN FORGERY TRIAL

Daily Express: MYSTERY DOCUMENT IN GERMAN FORGERY TRIAL: Page 3: 13 January 1930


EXTRACT

The second denial comes from Sir Henri Deterding, who is at present at St. Moritz. The oil magnate interviewed by telephone, declared that he had never heard of the conspiracy against Russia until he read reports of the trial in the German newspapers and found to his amazement that his name had been dragged into it. “The first I knew of this case was when I saw reports in certain of the German newspapers ,” Sir Henri said. “I was naturally astounded. I read the names of the accused and searched my mind in and out if I had ever met them. I can’t recall a single one. I am not connected with this case on any shape or form.”

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