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Reuters: Shell Canada CEO retires as company goes private

Thu Apr 19, 2007 3:04 PM BST

CALGARY, Alberta, April 19 (Reuters) – Shell Canada Ltd.’s chief executive will retire in June, marking the first step in parent Royal Dutch Shell Plc’s plan to absorb the company into its overall operations, Shell said on Thursday.

Royal Dutch Shell, one of the biggest oil majors, secured the minority shareholding of Shell Canada last month with a C$8.7 billion ($7.7 billion) bid to gain full control. Shell Canada is known for its vast Alberta oil sands reserves and natural gas business.

Clive Mather, 59, has been CEO of Shell Canada since 2004. He will be replaced on an interim basis by Adrian Loader, Royal Dutch Shell’s director of strategy and business development, the company said.

Loader will form a team comprising executives from Royal Dutch and Shell Canada to oversee the integration, a process expected to be complete by the end of 2007.

Analysts have speculated that many of Shell Canada’s administrative functions and some of its operations will be run from Houston or no longer needed.

Shell Canada spokesman Jeff Mann said the integration team will make those decisions in the coming months.

“Obviously they’re going to be looking to make the integrated organization as strong as and as effective as possible,” Mann said.

The affable Mather, a 38-year Royal Dutch Shell veteran, oversaw Shell Canada’s largest acquisition, the C$2.4 billion takeover of oil sands developer Blackrock Ventures Inc., and design and planning of the first expansion of the Athabasca Oil Sands Project, which could cost up to C$12.8 billion.

($1=$1.13 Canadian) 

© Reuters 2007. All rights reserved

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