Tony Hayward is BP Group Chief Executive, a member of the board of directors, and head of the BP executive management team.

BP's Hayward Leaving 'By Mutual Agreement'

The chief executive is out effective Oct. 1 and will be nominated as a non-executive director of BP's Russian joint venture.

BP announced today that Chief Executive Tony Hayward is stepping down "by mutual agreement" and has been replaced by Bob Dudley, 54, who came in to take charge of the Gulf of Mexico well capping operation. Hayward leaves the post effective Oct. 1 and will be nominated as a non-executive director of BP's Russian joint venture.

BP chairman Carl-Henric Svanberg said the company's board members were "deeply saddened to lose a CEO whose success over some three years in driving the performance of the company was so widely and deservedly admired. The tragedy of the Macondo well explosion and subsequent environmental damage has been a watershed incident," he continued. "BP remains a strong business with fine assets, excellent people and a vital role to play in meeting the world's energy needs. But it will be a different company going forward, requiring fresh leadership supported by robust governance and a very engaged board."

Dudley joined BP from Amoco after the companies merged in 1998. "I do not underestimate the nature of the task ahead," he said, "but the company is financially robust with an enviable portfolio of assets and professional teams that are among the best in the industry. I believe this combination -- allied to clear, strategic direction -- will put BP on the road to recovery."

BP also announced it intends to sell as much as $30 billion in assets, mainly from its upstream business, within 18 months and is taking a $32.3 billion charge to reflect the impact of the gulf oil spill, including $2.9 billion in costs to date and $29.3 billion for future costs including the promised $20 billion fund to repay damage claims.

"We expect we will pay the substantial majority of the remaining direct spill response costs by the end of the year," Hayward said. "Other costs are likely to be spread over a number of years, including any fines and penalties, longer-term remediation, compensation and litigation costs."

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