Total's Marketing Head to Quit, Eyes Solar Power
Total said on Friday executive committee member and new energies head Philippe Boisseau, who led the oil major into solar power, would quit next month and confirmed a newspaper report it aims to produce solar energy within two decades.
Boisseau, also head of marketing and services, will be replaced from April 15 by Momar Nguer, 59, senior vice president for Africa and Middle East marketing and services, Total said on Friday.
Philippe Sauquet, president for refining and chemicals and a member of the executive committee, was named interim president for new energies.
Chief Executive Patrick Pouyanne said in a statement Boisseau had "contributed significantly to the company's growth" and was "the man who steered Total into solar energy".
Total has invested some $3 billion in solar, which accounts for 3 percent of the group's assets. Total entered the solar business with the $1.3 billion 2011 takeover of U.S. solar panel maker SunPower Corp in one of the biggest moves by an oil and gas major into renewable energy.
Total aims to produce electricity within 20 years as part of its development in renewable energy, especially solar, a group spokesman said, citing a presentation by Pouyanne given on Wednesday and confirming a report in daily newspaper Les Echos.
"The question was raised as to what to do in the next 20 years to commercialise, produce and stock solar more than today," the spokesman said.
Les Echos said Pouyanne wants renewable energy to account for 20 percent of the company's portfolio by 2035.
Total Energie Gaz announced in September that it planned to sell electricity to small and medium-sized business customers in France from the start of this year.
(Reporting by Cyril Altmeyer and James Regan; Editing by Mark Potter