Shell Names BofA’s Holliday as its First American Chairman

Royal Dutch Shell Plc appointed former DuPont Co. boss and Bank of America Corp. executive Charles Holliday as chairman, the first American to head the board of Europe’s biggest oil company

A non-executive director since 2010, Holliday is a member of the remuneration committee, Shell said today in a statement. He replaces Jorma Ollila, who steps down after serving as chairman for nine years. His term will start after next year’s annual general meeting.

“We haven’t had an American chairman before,” Shell Chief Financial Officer Simon Henry said on a call. “We very much look forward to him bringing expertise from the industry -- ideas on technology, innovation, and the various relationships around the world which will be a great benefit to the company.”

Holliday, 66, was chairman of BofA until last month and remains a board member. Under his leadership, the board in 2011 elected its first non-U.S. citizen, Mukesh Ambani, India’s billionaire chief of Reliance Industries Ltd. That year, it considered expanding its lending program for renewable energy.

Holliday was head of chemical maker DuPont from 1998 to 2009, and is also a director at Deere & Co., which manufactures equipment for agriculture and construction.

The appointment follows management changes at some of Europe’s largest energy companies.

BG Group Plc appointed Statoil ASA’s Helge Lund as chief executive officer this month. Patrick Pouyanne was named CEO of Total SA last week after Christophe de Margerie was killed in a plane crash. Centrica Plc named Iain Conn, head of refining at BP Plc, its new boss in July.

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