Murphy Oil (NYSE:MUR) has made a sudden change in executive leadership. The company announced yesterday that CEO and President David Wood had resigned from the board of directors and was retiring. In his place, the board tapped Steve Cossé, a board member, and former Murphy Oil senior executive, to assume CEO duties “immediately.”
Wood’s abrupt resignation caught analysts by surprise, The Wall Street Journal noted. He’s only 55 years old and had been with the company for 17 years. Murphy Oil said Wood would serve as a consultant for a year.
A company spokesman said the sudden change of CEOs didn’t represent a shift in corporate strategy, noting the “the business moves forward.”
Along with the CEO change, Murphy announced that Executive Vice President Roger Jenkins had been appointed chief operation officer, a new title at Murphy Oil.
Shares of Murphy Oil edged lower, down less than 1%, in early Thursday morning trading.