by Ben Miller
The market largely cheered the appointment of Maria Das Graças Foster as the new CEO of Petrobras. The career engineer faces many challenges ahead.
When news of Maria Das Graças Foster's appointment as
the new CEO of Petrobas emerged on January 23, the Brazilian
oil company's stock closed that day 3.5% higher. The positive
market response confirmed investors' high comfort levels with
the decision. It also addressed the question of whether
José Sérgio Gabrielli's replacement as CEO would
be an oil specialist or political appointee. The answer seems
to be both.
Foster certainly has the work experience and strong track
record to support the decision to put her at the head of what
is one of the world's top five oil companies, making her the
first woman ever to hold such a position. "Graça," as
Foster is known, comes from Petrobras's natural gas and energy
division, but has sat in a variety of posts since she started
at the company as an intern in 1978.
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