The Board of Directors of Hydro and Statoil have agreed to recommend to their respective shareholders that the company to be established through the merger between Hydro's oil and gas activities and Statoil will be named StatoilHydro.
The 18 December 2006 integration agreement between the boards stated that the company would be given a new name at the time of establishment, but the boards now have concluded that it is appropriate to leave it up to the new company's Board of Directors to develop a new name. Up to that point, the company's name will be StatoilHydro. This conclusion will be included in the merger plan to be decided upon by the boards of Hydro and Statoil next week.
The merged company will develop a proposal for new name and logo based on business strategy, vision and values. The proposal will be presented at the first ordinary General Meeting in 2008, a process that is recognized by the Norwegian state as the company's main shareholder.
The combined company's retail business will operate under the name Statoil until a new name has been decided. It is up to the new company to decide whether this will be continued.
"There has been significant debate about the decision to develop a new name. Consequently, the boards have agreed on the process described and that the new company should be established under the name StatoilHydro," said Hydro Chairman Jan Reinås and Statoil Chairman Jannik Lindbæk in a joint statement.
"The decision enables us to concentrate fully on a successful integration planning process that reflects that this is a proposed merger between equal parties," Reinås and Lindbæk said.
In line with previous decisions, the new company's business areas will be managed from Bergen, Oslo and Stavanger. The business office will be in Stavanger, with group functions in Oslo and in Stavanger.
Hydro's aluminium and power business will continue under the Hydro name.