Bob Dudley, who was raised in Mississippi, will be the first non-British chief executive of BP. Financial services experts say his background could soften U.S. led attacks on the company.
Angus Campbell, Head of Sales, London Capital Group said "That's a good thing and also a lot of Americans will be pleased to see that the person that is the favourite to replace Tony Hayward is American himself. So that would certainly help the image of the company but of course going forward the future is very uncertain. After such a disastrous spill it's going to be very difficult for BP to actually win drilling contracts going forward. Their reputation has been tarnished very badly."