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Former BP chief exec to serve as interim chairman for mining trader

LONDON -- Mining and commodities trading giant Glencore Xstrata said Thursday it has appointed former BP chief executive Tony Hayward as its interim chairman, until a permanent candidate can be found.

The move marks the return of Hayward, 55, to the top tier of the UK corporate sector, since the Deepwater Horizon disaster three years ago, which claimed 11 lives and is expected to cost BP more than $40 billion in fines, cleanup costs and compensation payments.

He is also currently CEO of Genel Energy, a small oil company whose main operations are in the Kurdish region of Iraq. Hayward was previously Glencore Xstrata' s senior independent director and deputy chairman.

Hayward' s appointment comes after 81% of the voting Glencore Xstrata shareholders opposed the re-election of former chairman John Bond at the company' s annual general meeting in Zug, Switzerland, on Thursday. Bond acknowledged his likely ouster at the start of the meeting, handed over the chair to Hayward and then spent the rest of the meeting sitting a few seats over.

Bond, 70, had served as Xstrata' s chairman since May 2011, and played a key role in the merger between Glencore and Xstrata, which created the world' s No. 4 diversified miner. His departure was part of a wider cull of former Xstrata directors from the board of the newly-formed company.

In an interview earlier this month, Glencore Xstrata Chief Executive Ivan Glasenberg said he didn' t know who the company' s new chairman would be.

Hayward won' t be a candidate for the permanent position, said a person familiar with the matter.

John Miller in New York and James Herron in London contributed to this article.

Dow Jones Newswires

05/16/2013

 

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