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Struggling Tullow Oil Appoints Rahul Dhir as its New CEO

Rahul Dhir. [PHOTO/ COURTESY]

Irish Company Tullow Oil has appointed Rahul Dhir as its new chief executive Officer, with effect from July 1.

Dhir takes over from Dorothy Thompson who currently serves as the executive chair of Tullow.

Mr Dhir is currently CEO of Delonex Energy, an Africa-focused oil and gas company that he founded in 2013. Tullow has been without a CEO since Paul McDade left the business in December 2020.

Before Delonex, Mr Dhir served as managing director and CEO of Cairn India from its IPO in 2006 until 2012. His started his career as a Petroleum Engineer, before moving into investment banking where he led teams at Morgan Stanley and Merrill Lynch, advising major oil and gas companies on merger and acquisition and capital market related issues.

Read: Massive Job Losses Looming At Tullow Oil As Company Issues Redundancy Notice

Mr Dhir is a UK citizen and was educated at the Indian Institute of Technology, the University of Texas, and the Wharton School.

Tullow,which is leading oil exploration operations in Lokichar Oil Basin in Turkana,has been facing financial difficulties in its operations.

In January, the company announced plan to lay off some of its staff in a bid to cut costs.

In a memo to all staff members dated Wednesday, January 5, Martin Mbogo, the Tullow Managing Director in Kenya, stated that the company’s current performance has made it impossible for it to sustain its human resource wage bill, hence, need to restructure its workforce.

“The Company has had to review and assess its financial performance and business operations to ensure resources are allocated in the most efficient way possible and to ensure that the current structure of Tullow meeting the demands of the business effectively, ” the memo reads in part.

“Due to this review it has become necessary to restructure the company with some roles becoming unnecessary.”

Read: Tullow Oil Mulls Exiting Kenya Over Uncertain Future

The job cuts, according to Mbogo, will be carried out at all levels and cadres of the organization.

Some of the employees who will be affected include expatriates, Kenyan nationals in contracts, fixed, and permanent terms.

The company, which is a partner with the Kenyan government in the extraction and exportation of the oil, is mulling exiting operations in the country over uncertain future — mixed fortunes in the market.

Reports by Reuters indicate that the in conjunction with Total has hired French bank Natixis to run the joint sale process for blocks 10BA, 10BB and 13 T in the South Lokichar Basin.

Last year Tullow announced that it was willing to sell up to 20 percent of its 50 percent stake in the blocks. Reuters reports that the company is now willing to sell the entire stake after disappointing exploration results in Guyana and production problems in Ghana. The project is valued at between $1.25 billion to $2 billion (approximately Ksh125 billion to Ksh200 billion).

The fields already produce about 2,000 barrels of oil per day as part of an early production system. In August last year, the company announced that it had exported its first cargo of 250,000 barrels.

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Written by Francis Muli

Senior reporter at Kahawa Tungu, Muli has a passion for human interest stories. Believes in unearthing societal rots that have been hidden from the public eye.
Follow me on Twitter @FmuliKE. Email francis@kahawatungu.com

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