Dame Alison Carnwath was elected to BP’s board at the company’s annual general meeting (AGM) held in Manchester on Monday.
Dame Alison currently chairs the UK’s largest commercial property company, Land Securities, from where she will stand down in July after nine years. She is now one of four women on the 13-strong BP board.
Dame Alison has extensive board experience as a non-executive director, including as chairman of private equity house Livingbridge, non-executive director with insurance group Zurich and supervisory board member of chemicals firm BASF. She was made a dame in 2014 for her services to business.
Svanberg was hosting his last AGM before he steps down from the position of BP chairman at the end of this year, with Helge Lund to succeed him.
In his speech, Svanberg looked back over the past eight years as chairman and in looking forward said: ”BP is well positioned for the future and it makes me very proud to see how far we have come.“He was especially pleased, he said, ”that we have just published our document, ’Advancing the energy transition’.
Group chief executive Bob Dudley, in his speech to gathered shareholders, paid tribute to Svanberg saying: "A big company like BP is similar to a big ship – it needs a great captain at the helm. We needed one of these for the past eight years and we’ve certainly had one."
Addressing Svanberg directly, Dudley said: "You have guided us through some stormy waters - steered a safe passage - and helped to set us on a new course for the future."
Dudley also highlighted success stories throughout the BP business over 2017 and beyond, including:
Dudley also said there was huge potential for BP in the ‘mobility revolution’, saying: ”You may have heard recently about some of the exciting things we’re doing with fast charging for electric vehicles or producing lower carbon jet fuel for aeroplanes from household waste.”Adding: ”We have a lot of interesting plans to unveil in the weeks and months ahead.”
He concluded BP's 109th AGM saying: ”I hope you agree it’s a really exciting time for your company. We are growing, and we’re growing safely and in a disciplined and responsible way.”