TNK-BP Holding Votes on Restructuring Subsidiaries

An extraordinary shareholders meeting of TNK-BP Holding ended voting by correspondence Wednesday in an effort to absorb four subsidiaries to simplify the oil producer's convoluted corporate structure.

The company, TNK-BP's publicly listed unit, voted on a "technical" procedure meant to decrease its "huge" number of subsidiaries, TNK-BP spokeswoman Marina Dracheva said.

The simplification process began in 2005, she said, adding that it would take up to four days to count the votes and announce the results.

The shareholders voted on absorbing Sborsare Management, Sidanco Investment, Sidanko Neftepererabotka and Sidanko Securities, a TNK-BP statement said.

The announcement comes a day after outgoing chief executive Robert Dudley said in Washington that the company would remain a major player in the Russian energy sector after resolving a protracted dispute between its British and Russian owners.

Dudley, who has agreed to step down, told the U.S.-Russia Business Council that the company had a solid foundation to move forward.

"In its toughest of all years, I believe the company did build a culture which was resilient and adaptive to its environment, and that's why I think it will remain a force," Dudley said.

Co-owners BP and a quartet of Russian billionaires had battled over strategy and development. Dudley said he left Russia this summer because he had become a lightning rod to the Russian shareholders, who charged that he favored the interests of BP.

TNK-BP last week said the dispute was resolved. Dudley said he supported the deal, which will replace him under an agreement the parties reached in August.

"They have found a sensible agreement," he said. "I will help in the transition of the governance of the company."

Reuters, MT