BP chief executive Tony Hayward was in Aberdeen last night to help celebrate the official opening of the oil company’s new North Sea headquarters at Dyce.
Mr Hayward’s short visit to the north-east continues today, with a trip offshore.
All of BP’s North Sea head-office staff are now working in the new building after a phased relocation to the multimillion-pound complex at Stoneywood Business Park.
The new HQ houses about 1,200 BP staff and contract-ors. To ensure there is enough accommodation in peak work periods, two annexes at its former HQ are being kept for up to three years.
A planning brief for the old site from developer Goodman contains proposals for new homes, offices and shops. The plans, still a fairly early stage, could result in more than 250 homes being built at Dyce.
BP unveiled its plans for the new HQ – on the former site of a go-karting centre and curling club – three years ago.
The building, occupied on a 15-year lease, was recently acquired by Germany-based Pramerica Real Estate from Goodman Property Investors for £50million-plus.
Meanwhile, the Russian co-owners of oil firm TNK-BP, which is half owned by BP, have rejected a deal under which the UK company would buy their stakes.
In rebuffing the offer, the Russian billionaires accused BP of attempting to seize control of the venture.
Stan Plovets, chief executive of the Alfa-Access-Renova consortium representing the Russians, said talks with BP over the future of the troubled venture were stalled. He said: “There is no dialogue. All our proposals are being rejected without discussion.”
Sources said later that a lawsuit had been filed, with the Russians disputing BP-appointed managers’ choice of new board nominations for TNK-BP. Shareholders are expected to vote on the new board at their AGM on June 26, but the Russian shareholders have said they will boycott the meeting.
BP and the Russian shareholders have clashed over TNK-BP’s structure and strategy since last month, but many analysts believe the real dispute may be about its future ownership.