The appointment will take effect on the closing of the merger of Wintershall and DEA, which is expected in the first half of 2019 and is still subject to customary regulatory approvals.
Smith has worked for Vesta Energy, Talisman Energy, and BP.
For the last two years, Smith has been the CFO and EVP, corporate development at Vesta Energy, a private oil and gas company based in Calgary.
Prior to Vesta, he was the CFO of Talisman Energy, a Calgary-based international independent with operations in more than 20 countries.
During his tenure, he led the strategic review process for Talisman Energy, which culminated in the sale of the company to Repsol. Before becoming CFO, he was accountable for Talisman’s North American operations, a business producing 180,000 barrels of oil equivalent a day with 1,300 employees. He led Talisman’s strategic shift in North America from conventional gas producer to leading shale gas producer, successfully divesting $5 billion of non-core assets, and establishing positions for the company in four of the largest unconventional resource plays in North America.
For the first 15 years of his career, Smith was employed in a variety of commercial, finance and operational leadership roles at BP. These include SVP West Siberia at TNK-BP, Business Unit leader of BP’s North Sea activity, CFO of BP’s business in Trinidad and Tobago, and member of the team appointed to lead the integration of BP and Amoco.
“With Wintershall DEA, we will create the leading independent European exploration and production company. We are very pleased that we were able to attract Paul Smith, who is an experienced specialist and leader,” said Hans-Ulrich Engel, vice chairman of the Board of Executive Directors and CFO of BASF. “He will strengthen the joint venture’s management team on its way to further profitable growth.”
“I am tremendously excited to be… part of the creation of the largest independent exploration and production company in Europe,” Smith said. “The combined portfolio and scale of Wintershall DEA will provide significant potential for sustainable, long-term growth.”
Wintershall DEA will have exploration and production activity in 13 countries across Europe, Latin America, North Africa and the Middle East. The combined business would have had pro-forma production of approximately 575,000 barrels of oil equivalent per day in 2017, almost 70 percent of which comes from natural gas. Production is expected to rise to between 750,000 and 800,000 barrels of oil equivalent per day in the early 2020s as the company executes its business plan.