By S BIRRUNTHA / Pic By BERNAMA
PETRONAS Dagangan Bhd (PetDag) has appointed Azrul Osman Rani (picture) as its new MD and CEO effective Jan 1, 2020.
In a statement yesterday, Petroliam Nasional Bhd (Petronas) said Azrul takes over the helm from Datuk Seri Syed Zainal Abidin Syed M Tahir, who was first appointed as Petronas VP of marketing, downstream business in July 2017 and subsequently as its MD and CEO in June last year.
Azrul is currently the head of commercial development and joint venture (JV) formation at Petronas Refinery and Petrochemical Corp (PRPC) with a second role as the CEO of PRPC Utilities and Facilities.
Being once a Petronas scholar, he began his career at PetDag’s retail business before paving his way as a trader at the Malaysian International Trading Corp Sdn Bhd (Mitco), marketing various petrochemical products for the Indonesian market.
He showed strong leadership skills which led him to become one of the youngest country managers appointed to lead various units within Mitco, as well as other divisions within Petronas Group.
From 2014 to 2018, Azrul spearheaded the strategic negotiation that led to the formation of the JV between Petronas and Saudi Arabian Oil Co within the Pengerang Integrated Complex, Petronas’ largest downstream investment worth US$27 billion (RM113.4 billion).
Speaking of the appointment, Syed Zainal said Azrul has had an illustrative career in Petronas in the marketing and commercial segment.
“It ranges from trading activities, mergers and acquisitions, and negotiations that will complement the dynamic of the business.
“With over 23 years of experience in the oil and gas business, I look forward to having Azrul to take PetDag to the next level of growth,” he said in the statement.
During his tenure as MD and CEO, Syed Zainal drove the customer-first mindset, consequently transforming PetDag business approach in delivering more seamless and frictionless solutions to enhance customer experience.
Under his leadership, PetDag’s sales volume as of Sept 30 this year improved by 6%, largely attributed to improved stations’ productivity, more operational stations and higher volume registered for the new Petronas Primax 95 with Pro-Drive.
PetDag was also voted Malaysia’s Brand of the Year at the Putra Brand Awards in 2018, as well as the Company of the Year by the Edge Billion Ringgit Club.
Moving forward, as the VP of marketing, downstream business and a member of PetDag board, Syed Zainal will continue to oversee the marketing activities of PetDag.
In its recent third quarter, PetDag recorded a lower net profit of RM239 million ended Sept 30, 2019, from RM270.27 million in the same period last year.
The company’s revenue slipped to RM7.81 billion versus RM7.82 billion previously, mainly weighed down by lower average selling prices in both retail and commercial segments.
The board also recently declared an interim dividend of 16 sen per share, which is a total payout of RM158.95 million for the current quarter, payable on Dec 20, 2019.