* Hayward also CEO of London-listed oil firm Genel
* Hayward will eventually step down from Genel -source
* Genel declines to comment on whether Hayward will go
(Adds statement from British Pension Funds Group asking members
to oppose Hayward's appointment)
By Silvia Antonioli and Karolin Schaps
LONDON, May 8 Glencore Xstrata
confirmed Tony Hayward as permanent chairman of the mining and
commodities trading group, sealing the former BP chief
executive's comeback from the worst offshore oil spill in U.S.
Hayward, who is also chief executive of London-listed oil
company Genel Energy Plc, has been Glencore Xstrata's
interim chairman since last May, when his predecessor Sir John
Bond was ousted by shareholders.
At the time, Glencore Xstrata said Hayward would return to
his role as a senior independent director once a chairman was
Other leading candidates for the role were former Vale
boss Roger Agnelli and ex-BG CEO Frank
Chapman, sources said. The final decision was made after
consultation with shareholders.
Hayward's confirmation as chairman of one of the world's
largest mining groups completes his return to the corporate big
league after he was forced out of BP following the 2010
Gulf of Mexico oil spill.
He was severely criticised for his handling of the disaster
that killed 11 people and left huge stretches of sea and coast
fouled with oil.
"Tony Hayward's experience at BP, including resolving the
TNK-BP dispute and his subsequent success at Genel mitigate the
negatives that surrounded his departure from BP," Nomura
analysts said in a note to clients, referring to BP's then
Russian joint venture.
He is expected to eventually step down as chief executive of
Genel, the oil and gas explorer he has invested in alongside
British-born financier Nat Rothschild, a source close to the
Genel, which focuses on producing oil in the autonomous
Iraqi region of Kurdistan, declined to comment on whether
Hayward would leave.
"Tony Hayward is and continues to be CEO of Genel Energy and
will continue to do both roles, as he has done successfully for
the past 12 months," a Genel spokesman said in a statement.
One media report on Wednesday said Hayward would leave Genel
after a successor has been found and a handover period allowed
to take place, while another said Hayward was expected to leave
within a year.
"If he does end up leaving, we would see this as a negative
for Genel. Nevertheless the fundamentals of our Genel investment
case ... remain intact," Arden Partners analyst Daniel Slater
After leaving BP, Hayward co-founded Vallares Plc with
Rothschild and became chief executive of Genel Energy Plc in
2011 after the merger of Vallares and Turkey's Genel Energy
In his permanent role at Glencore Xstrata, Hayward could
help the company with new acquisitions in the oil sector.
"Oil seems to be a growing arm of the Glencore business and
if they want to push and expand a bit more Tony's expertise can
certainly help with that," Investec analyst Marc Elliott said.
Meanwhile, a group of British public sector pension funds
has opposed Hayward's appointment and asked its members to vote
against him in protest at the company's failure to set targets
for female representation on its board.
Glencore defended its position and said it was searching for
suitable women board members.
"Glencore values and promotes diversity across its business.
The appointment of a female board member is a significant
consideration, and our nominations committee is working to
identify appropriate female candidates," a Glencore official
said in a statement.
Glencore expanded its oil and gas operations with the 800
million pound ($1.4 billion) acquisition of Chad-focused energy
company Caracal Energy last month.
($1 = 0.5894 British Pounds)
(Additional reporting by Alex Lawler and Paul Sandle and Tasim
Zahid in Bangalore; Editing by Erica Billingham)