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Essar Oil UK Appoints Tony Fountain as a Non-Executive Board Director

17 APRIL 2023 – Essar Oil (UK) Limited (“Essar” or the “Company”), the leading downstream energy company, has announced the appointment of Tony Fountain, Managing Partner at Essar Energy Transition, as an non-executive board director, effective from 17 April 2023.

The appointment of this highly respected industry leader comes at a key time for Essar as it delivers on its investment plans of transitioning to amongst the first low carbon refineries globally.  Tony’s appointment will support the delivery of Essar Energy Transition (EET) ambition to lead the UK energy transition by investing US$3.6 billion in developing a range of low carbon energy transition projects over the next five years, of which US$2.4 billion will be invested at the Essar site in Ellesmere Port, between Liverpool and Manchester.

Tony brings extensive manufacturing, marketing and specialist trading experience and transformation experience.  He started his career at BP and his roles have included the CEO of Refining and Marketing at Reliance Industries Limited.  This was uniquely followed by a period as CEO of the UK Nuclear Decommissioning Authority – with oversight for nuclear decommissioning.  He then went on to apply this extensive operational, regulatory, and health and safety experience in a range of board positions, also applying his governance experience to companies operating in complex environments over three continents.  This includes roles as Chair of Sellafield UK and of Nayara Energy Limited and as a non-Executive Director at ATCO Group.  

Essar’s executive Board member is Deepak Maheshwari (Chief Executive Officer).  Its existing non-executive board members are: Kuthoore Natarajan Venkatasubramanian (Independent Non-Executive Director), Tim Bullock (Independent Non-Executive Director), Andrew Wright (Non-Executive Director), and Mark Palios (Independent Non-Executive Director).  The Board is chaired by Prashant Ruia as non-executive chair.

The appointment by Essar marks another step in strengthening its corporate governance framework.  As well as supporting the Board and business with his deep understanding of corporate governance and Board participation, Tony has extensive experience of oil industry operations and energy sector regulation.  Tony will chair the Health, Safety, Security and Environment (HSSE) Committee of the Board and be a member of the Audit and Risk, and Remuneration, Diversity and Nomination Committees.

Prashant Ruia, Non-Executive Chairman of Essar, said: “We would like to welcome Tony to Essar’s Board.  He brings over 40 years of operational, regulatory and executive experience that will enhance our business at this vital stage in our transition.  We are committed to leading the energy transition and Tony’s appointment will play a crucial role in achieving this ambition.”

Tony Fountain, Non-Executive Director of Essar, said: “I am pleased to be invited to Essar’s Board. The Company is committed to be amongst the first low carbon refineries globally and to play a key role in the decarbonisation of the North West.  The task at hand is a vital one, to secure the refinery’s performance today to enable it to act as a catalyst for the levelling-up investment the region needs and to deliver on Essar Energy Transition’s commitments.”


Media contact:

Michelle Lewis, Corporate Affairs Director

07805 854169

About Essar in the UK

Essar Oil (UK) Ltd is committed to playing a key role in the decarbonisation of the UK economy, with ambitious plans to build an energy transition cluster at Stanlow.   These include the construction of two new low carbon hydrogen production units on site as part of HyNet, with a planned total investment of £1 billon.   Follow on capacity growth is planned to reach 80% of the UK Government’s new target of 5GW of low carbon hydrogen for power, transport, industry and homes by 2030.

Essar is a leading UK-focused downstream energy company whose main asset is the Stanlow Manufacturing Complex, one of the most advanced refineries in Europe situated close to the major cities of Liverpool and Manchester. Stanlow has 800 employees, and is a key strategic national asset, annually producing over 16% of the UK’s road transport fuels, while playing a key role in Britain’s broader petrochemical industry.

Since acquiring Stanlow in 2011, Essar has invested $1 billion in margin improvement and other efficiency initiatives to ensure the refinery remains competitive in a rapidly changing market. The company is a major supplier in the North West and beyond with customers including most of the major retail brands operated by international oil companies and supermarkets, Manchester Airport, leading commercial airlines and the region’s trains and buses.