New Exxon chief enters the market, cautiously

 

ASSOCIATED PRESS REPORTS that Darren Woods, the new CEO of Exxon Mobil, is a veteran of the more cautious refining side of the oil business who is likely to focus relentlessly on controlling costs.

Woods may take a more hesitant approach to deal-making than his predecessor, Rex Tillerson, who hailed from the more swashbuckling exploration side and famously did business with Russian President Vladimir Putin.

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It’s unclear whether Woods will be any more successful than Tillerson in achieving peace with environmental critics. The early signals are mixed.

Woods was little known outside the company even after emerging as Tillerson’s heir apparent. Two months after taking over, Woods is making his first public rounds, meeting with investors last week and speaking Monday at a major energy conference in Houston.

Woods, 52, joined Exxon in 1992 and has spent most of his career in chemicals and refining, the so-called downstream part of the business.

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