Christina Verchere (47) became the CEO of the largest company in Romania – OMV Petrom – mid last year. Prior to OMV Petrom, Christina Verchere worked at BP, one of the world‘s largest oil companies. She has gained an impressive experience on 3 continents, including management positions in the US, Canada and Asia Pacific.
She says she felt honored to take on the role in OMV Petrom, given the company’s impressive track-record and its contribution to the Romanian economy. She says her passion for the energy industry has grown as she became aware of the impact energy has on people‘s everyday lives. Moreover, this has attracted her to OMV Petrom: the fact that it is such an important company for Romania especially as an emerging economy, also combined with the fact that it is an integrated oil and gas.
„With global population growth, more and more energy is needed to improve lives and living standards, and this stands true for Romania. It is hard to imagine modern life without gas for heating homes, without fuels for cars, without electricity for phones or computers. Our role, as an energy company, is to cover this demand, while lowering costs and reducing the impact on the environment. OMV Petrom is an active company on all these activities in the energy value chain, it provides the energy for a better life for millions of Romanians and that’s what attracted me to the company, „said Christina Verchere, OMV Petrom CEO.
And it is also about the Neptun Deep project, where OMV Petrom and partner ExxonMobil had the first major gas discovery in the deep waters of the Black Sea. „The Neptun Deep project is a huge opportunity for Romania to secure its gas needs, and also to become a major player at the regional level, an opportunity to increase revenues to the state budget and to create new jobs. Usually, for such large-scale projects, many pieces of the puzzle need to be aligned: such as regulatory framework, fiscal stabilty, market liberalization and key infrastructure. Neptune Deep remains a huge priority for us and we continue our dialogue with the authorities to create the way forward“, Verchere said.
Regarding daily activity at OMV Petrom, Christina Verchere shared the management principles that guide her. „People are at the foundation of any business. It is my personal opinion that the best solutions are the result of collective minds. The role of a leader is to give direction. Only by listening to the others, showing them how they can contribute, encouraging them to talk, can you make things happen. You have to be sincere with people, give them the freedom to leave their mark on the business and the results will be seen. Leadership has evolved over the last 20 to 30 years, from giving instructions to empowering and recognizing each one‘s contribution“, says OMV Petrom CEO.
Christina Verchere knows that OMV Petrom will continue to play an important role in ensuring the energy supply that Romania needs: „We remain committed to operations in Romania. We are an important company for Romania through the business we generate for suppliers and partners, through the taxes we pay and through the tens of thousands of jobs that depend on us“, concludes Verchere.
In the first months at OMV Petrom, she wanted to get to know as many people as possible. She says she is excited by OMV Petrom and by the team here. What are her impressions after the first year in Romania? Verchere recounts that when she was proposed the job, the first she wanted to check was if Bucharest and the country could feel like home for the coming years. In addition, she was attracted a job prospect in Europe, closer to her family after spending the last four years in Jakarta, Indonesia, leading BP’s Asia-Pacific region. „I like Romania and the people – they are very warm and welcoming. You are lucky to have such a beautiful country: with mountains and the sea, both so close to the capital. I am delighted to have Bucharest as my home.“