June 3, 2020 / 11:29 AM / a month ago

Eni planning overhaul to step up green drive: sources

MILAN/LONDON (Reuters) - Italian oil major Eni is planning to create a division to focus on new energy solutions which could be headed by its CFO, as it steps up preparations for a decarbonised future, two sources said.

FILE PHOTO: The logo of Italian energy company Eni is seen at Eni's Renewable Energy and Environmental R&D Center in Novara, Italy, September 26, 2019. REUTERS/Flavio Lo Scalzo/File Photo

Eni’s restructuring plans come as the oil and gas sector faces a collapse in global oil consumption following the coronavirus epidemic and long-term uncertainty over energy demand as governments battle climate change.

The state-controlled group is looking to create the new green division to look after renewables and other clean energy business while keeping oil and gas activity in a separate unit, the sources familiar with the matter said.

Long-time CFO Massimo Mondazzi could be moved across to head up the new division, or part of it, one of the sources said, adding that no final decision had yet been taken. “Mondazzi is going to be head of downstream, chemicals and renewables,” the second source said.

Eni declined to comment.

Italian daily Il Sole 24 Ore reported the potential overhaul on Tuesday.

Eni, headed by veteran oilman Claudio Descalzi, pledged earlier this year to slash its greenhouse gas emissions by 80% in one of the most ambitious clean-up drives in an industry under pressure from investors to go green.

To reach the goal it is looking to have less oil and more gas in its portfolio, build its renewable capacity, convert refineries to bio-fuels and step up forestry and carbon capture projects.

“The restructuring underway is a move that will focus minds and give the market an idea of the actual size of Eni’s green business,” one of the sources said.

The sources said the new division was likely to include the group’s chemical business Versalis, its retail activities and probably refining, though final details had yet to be ironed out.

Reporting by Stephen Jewkes;Editing by Elaine Hardcastle

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