Kudistan region of Iraq-focused Genel Energy PLC (LON:GENL) saw its shares push higher today as it announced that former Ophir Energy Plc (LON:OPHR) boss Dr William Higgs will take up the role of chief operating officer, with a broker upgrade also adding support.
The new hire comes as Paul Schofield steps down from the COO role as of October 16, with Higgs to start on November 6, the company said in a statement.
Higgs has nearly 30 years' of global exploration, development and operations experience, including more than five years in executive roles for independent exploration and production (E&P) companies.
Most recently, as COO for Ophir, he was responsible for managing the global asset portfolio.
Meanwhile, Genel also got a boost as Deutsche Bank upgraded its rating for the stock to ‘hold’ from ’sell’ after more than doubling its target price to 154p from 72p in a review of European Exploration & Production companies.
In the note, the German bank's analysts said the upgrade follows Genel’s “deal with the KRG on the past receivables it was owed and that any potential Turkish pipeline shut-down is likely to be temporary.”
In late afternoon trading, Genel shares were 3% higher at 135.5p.
-- Adds Deutsche downgrade, updates share price --