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Shell appoints new finance chief: ‘a Shell veteran’

BBC News: Shell appoints new finance chief: ‘a Shell veteran’

24 June 04

Troubled oil giant Shell has appointed a new finance chief as it seeks to reassure nervous investors.

Peter Voser, formerly chief financial officer at Swiss firm ABB, will join Shell with effect from 4 October.

Shell’s former CFO Judy Boynton quit in April this year following a row over the firm’s booking of oil reserves.

Shell has been forced to restate its reserves four times this year, sparking anger amongst shareholders and leading several top executives to quit.

Ms Boynton’s departure had been preceded by the removal of chairman Philip Watts and oil and gas chief Walter van de Vijver.

Mr Voser is a Shell veteran having held a variety of finance and business roles with the firm in Switzerland, the UK, Argentina and Chile from 1982 to March 2002.

His last posting at Shell was as chief financial officer on the global oil products executive committee.

Shell’s troubles first became apparent in January this year when it stunned investors by cutting its oil and gas reserves by 20%, a move which caused its share price to tumble.

There then followed three more restatements and the company is now under investigation by both UK and US authorities.

In April, Shell, as well as unveiling a 9% jump in first-quarter profits, announced a share buyback as it sought to calm investors.

The firm is also undertaking an internal review in an attempt to restore shareholder confidence.

It has said its twin board structure may be abolished – a reform many investors have been demanding.

The Anglo-Dutch group currently has two boards: one oversees Royal Dutch Petroleum, which owns 60% of the group, and the other heads UK-based Shell Transport and Trading.

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