Equinor has appointed insider Anders Opedal as its new CEO, replacing Eldar Saetre who is to retire after 40 years in the Norwegian energy company.
Mr Opedal, who will take up the role and become president on November 2, is currently executive vice president for Technology, Projects and Drilling, having overseen major projects including Mariner in the UK last year.
Equinor started its search for a new CEO in November and reports emerged last month that Mr Opedal was one of four candidates on the shortlist to replace the 64-year-old.
Mr Opedal’s remit is to accelerate Equinor’s development as a “broad energy company” and “increase value creation for our shareholders through the energy transition,” the firm said.
He will receive a base salary of 9.1m NOK (£760,600) with various bonus schemes in place.
Mr Opedal first joined Equnor as a petroleum engineer in 1997, and in 2011 was chosen to lead the firm’s 300billion NOK project portfolio (£25.4bn). He later held roles including chief operating officer and country manager for Brazil.
He has degrees from Heriot-Watt University in Edinburgh and the Norwegian Institute of Technology.
He said: “I am honoured and proud to take over the responsibility as CEO. I am confident in Equinor and all our people, and in our ability to change and continue creating long-term value for our shareholders also in a low carbon future.
“We have a great starting point for what will be a massive transition with our strong assets, outstanding competence, technology and innovation skills, and we have highly engaged people and strong values to guide us in this process.
“Together, we will accelerate the development of Equinor as a broad energy company and our growth within renewables.”
Eldar Saetre will official retire on March 1 next year and will act as an advisor in the interim period.
The board paid tributes to the outgoing boss, who helped the firm survive the last major downturn in 2014 and position it for the energy transition.
Mr Saetre said: “I have spent my entire working life in Equinor. I love this company and it has been the utmost privilege to work with all the great people in Equinor for the last four decades.
“I am very proud of what we have achieved together. Thanks to the relentless efforts from competent and dedicated people across the company, Equinor is today a stronger and more competitive company, better prepared for a low carbon future than ever.
“I know Anders well, and I am confident that he is the right person to lead the company during the next phase of the energy transition.”