Sir Frank Chapman was awarded the honorary degree of Doctor of Technology (Hon DTech) on Wednesday 10 July at 10.30am.
Sir Frank Chapman grew up in West Ham in East London and left secondary school at 16 to study an Ordinary National Diploma in Engineering at East Ham Technical College, which he completed in 1971 with distinction. He went on to study mechanical engineering at Queen Mary College, London University, receiving a first class honours degree. His first job, after graduating in 1974, was at BP's research centre in Sunbury-on-Thames.
Four years later he joined Royal Dutch/Shell, working some 18 years overseas in many roles and locations. He was General Manager of Shell's Central UK North Sea Assets and Project Manager of the giant Troll offshore development on the Norwegian continental shelf.
After Shell, he moved to British Gas as Managing Director of Exploration and Production. The company became BG plc in 1997 following the demerger of Centrica, and Sir Frank joined the main plc Board. He was made President of BG International in 1999, and following a second demerger was appointed Chief Executive of the new BG Group plc in 2000.
The Royal Academy of Engineering notes, "Under Sir Frank's leadership, BG Group's growth rate was a multiple of the industry average as it has transformed into a global gas major. In that period, the Group's market capitalisation rose from $13 billion to some $60 billion and it is now firmly established as a FTSE 100 company." The Chairman of BG Group, Andrew Gould said Sir Frank's achievement had been to "grow BG Group out of a minor division of the old British Gas into a vibrant international oil and gas major".
Sir Frank stepped down as Chief Executive and Member of the Board of BG Group on 31 December 2012, continuing to act as an advisor to the new Chief Executive until he retired in June.
He is a Fellow of the Royal Academy of Engineering, a Chartered Engineer, a Fellow of the Energy Institute (which awarded him the Cadman Award for services to the petroleum industry), a Fellow of the Institution of Mechanical Engineers, a Fellow of the Royal Society of Arts and a Companion of the Institute of Management. He was knighted in the 2011 Birthday Honours for services to the oil and gas industries.
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Jonathan ShackletonHead of Communications
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