BP is facing calls from some of its biggest shareholders to sell off up to half its assets as part of a radical restructure.
Some of the firm's top 10 shareholders want the company to sell a further $30bn worth of assets on top of the $30bn (£18.37bn) already earmarked, following the Gulf of Mexico oil disaster a year ago, according to the Sunday Times.
The shareholders claim the oil giant has a "once in a generation" chance to transform itself into a smaller, faster growing company.
One shareholder told the paper: "The company needs to be shrunk considerably to make it an interesting investment. We would like to see management dispose of much more than the $30bn indicated.
"Recent asset sales show that there are lots of buyers for these assets out there and it's a fantastic opportunity to wind up half the company ... it's about shrinking to a size where gross investment makes a meaningful difference to bottom line."
BP has already sold $24bn (£14.69 billion) worth of assets but its share price is still a third lower than it was before the Gulf of Mexico disaster, closing at 455.75p on Friday.
A BP spokesman said: "We are not planning to break up the company. The target of $30bn of divestments is enough to cover the cost of the clean up of the Gulf of Mexico and the compensation fund."
Meanwhile, another major investor is understood to have written to BP raising a number of issues, including a lack of confidence in its chairman Carl-Henric Svanberg.
But BP said its chairman had the full support of the board, adding he had just received backing from more than 92% of shareholders at its annual general meeting last week.
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