Sam Laidlaw

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Sam Laidlaw
Born William Samuel Hugh Laidlaw
(1956-01-03) 3 January 1956 (age 63)
Kensington, London, England
Residence Kensington and Chelsea, London
Nationality British
Education Eton College
Alma mater Gonville and Caius College, Cambridge
Occupation Businessman
Years active 1977–present
Title CEO of Centrica plc
Term 2006–present
Predecessor Sir Roy Gardner
Successor Incumbent
Spouse(s) Deborah "Debbie" Morris-Adams
Children 4

William Samuel Hugh Laidlaw (born 3 January 1956, Kensington) is the former Chief Executive Officer of Centrica, the British natural gas and electricity company.

Early life

He is the son of Sir Christopher Laidlaw (1922-2010), former Deputy Chairman of BP. Sam Laidlaw attended Eton College and studied Law at Gonville and Caius College, Cambridge, gaining an MA in 1977. He qualified as a solicitor in 1979 with the Macfarlanes law company. He obtained an MBA in 1981 from the INSEAD Business School in Fontainebleau, France. His father was Director of the Management School for seven years.


He was with U.S. oil company Amerada Hess (1981-2001) building their North Sea business before running their worldwide Exploration & Production business and becoming President and Chief Operating Officer (1995-2001). He was Executive Vice President of Global Business Development of the California-based Chevron Corporation from May 2003 and became Chief Executive Officer of Enterprise Oil in 2002 (which was bought under his leadership by Shell in 2002 for £3.5bn). Enterprise Oil also faced a hostile takeover from Eni, the Rome-based oil company.

In January 2008, he was appointed a non-executive director of HSBC Holdings plc and in December 2010 he was appointed as the lead non-executive director on the board of the Department for Transport. He was also a member of the UK Prime Minister's Business Advisory Group (2010-2012). Until August 2007, he was a non-executive director of Hanson plc. He is a trustee of the medical charity RAFT.

He has been Chairman of the Petroleum Science and Technology Institute, based in Aberdeen, a Director of the National Engineering Laboratory and President of the United Kingdom Offshore Operators Association. He chaired a report on Business and Higher Education for the CBI in 2010 and led the inquiry into the West Coast Rail Franchise in 2012.

He joined Centrica in July 2006 taking over from Sir Roy Gardner. He is Chairman of the Executive Committee and the Disclosure Committee. In 2013, Laidlaw received around £4 million in bonuses, exciting critical comments from Frances O'Grady, General Secretary of the TUC and Caroline Flint, the shadow energy secretary.[1]

Personal life

He is married with three sons and a daughter. He lives in Kensington and Chelsea, London. He married Deborah (Debbie) Morris-Adams in Aylesbury Vale in Buckinghamshire in April 1989.

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  1. Rankin, Jennifer (27 March 2013). "Centrica bosses split £16m pay pot as customers face 6% gas price rise". The Guardian.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>