BG pay vote highlights shareholder unease

London Thu May 15, 2014 2:23pm EDT

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London May 15 (Reuters) - A third of BG's shareholders voted against the energy company's remuneration report on Thursday highlighting investors' unease over its bosses' pay following its warning about lower output and the CEO's sudden departure last month.

Some 33 percent of shareholder votes cast were against the group's remuneration report.

BG has begun a major review of its assets after Chief Executive Chris Finlayson quit after just 16 months in the job. The oil and gas group has also warned that output would be at the lower end of its target range this year due to problems in Egypt. The company has said it might consider partial asset sales in places such as Tanzania, Canada, the United States and Brazil.

The upheaval has led to speculation that a takeover bid for BG is a possibility.

During the shareholder meeting, chairman Andrew Gould was asked about the future of the company given the speculation that BG could attract a takeover bid or be broken up. He also mentioned the management changes.

"I'm not going to pretend it is not unfortunate ... But I'm not concerned we won't be able to attract the right candidates," said Gould, who is now interim executive chairman following the CEO's departure. He reiterated that he would step down from this interim executive role when a replacement for Finlayson is found.

Gould said BG has passed the peak of its capital investment which should decrease from 2015. "I'm convinced the long-term growth story for the company remains intact."

He also said BG had more realistic expectations of what it would take to develop reserves and could chose to sell out of some projects before taking them to maturity.

Gould also said that in the event the company decided to sell some assets, it would look at increasing profit distribution to shareholders. (Reporting by Dmitry Zhdannikov. Editing by Jane Merriman)

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