Shell to hike dividend by mammoth 15%


Shell to hike dividend by mammoth 15% as oil giant’s new boss pledges to return more cash to investors

  • Chief exec Wael Sawan  plans to ‘create more value with less emissions’
  • Oil giant recommits to becoming a zero-emissions company by 2050 

Shell is set to hike its dividend by 15 per cent as part of the oil giant’s plans to hand more cash back to shareholder under new boss Wael Sawan.

Under plans to ‘create more value with less emissions’, Shell told investors Wednesday the hike would become effective from the second quarter of its financial year and the group will initiate share buybacks of ‘at least’ $5billion (£4billion) in the second half.

Shell chief executive Wael Sawan

Shell chief executive Wael Sawan

It includes ambitious cost cutting plans, with Shell set to slash capital spending to $22billion to 25billion per year for 2024 and 2025, and find $2billion to $3billion of annual operating cost savings by the end of 2025.

Overall shareholder distributions will rise from 20 to 30 per cent of cash flow from operations to 30 to 40 per cent. In the short term, this is reflected in the dividend hike. 

Chief executive Mr Sawan, who was appointed in January, said: ‘We are investing to provide the secure energy customers need today and for a long time to come, while transforming Shell to win in a low-carbon future.

‘Performance, discipline, and simplification will be our guiding principles as we allocate capital to enhance shareholder distributions, while enabling the energy transition.’

Shell also reiterated its commitment to become a net-zero emissions company by 2050.

The oil company has come under fire for the legitimacy of its green credentials since Sawan was appointed, with a British regulator last week banning three Shell ads  promoting its low-carbon products for potentially misleading customers.

Shell survived a shareholder revolt over its green strategy last month at a crunch annual meeting that saw disruption from climate change protesters.

But the firm, which unveiled record profits in the first quarter, said it was making ‘good progress’ on this front, reducing emissions from its operations, and from the fuels and other energy products it sells to customers.

It is aiming to achieve ‘near-zero’ methane emissions by 2030 and to eliminate routine flaring from its upstream operations by 2025.

Shell will also invest $10billion to $15billion between 2023 and 2025 to support operations like biofuels, hydrogen and electric vehicle charging.

Sawan said: ‘We need to continue to create profitable business models that can be scaled at pace to truly impact the decarbonisation of the global energy system.

‘We will invest in the models that work – those with the highest returns that play to our strengths.’





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