Published 28/02/2010 | 05:00
THE former Tullow Oil financial chief played no small part in the journey of the FTSE 100-listed company towards becoming a major player worth £10bn.
Mr Hickey trained as an accountant with the now defunct Andersen. In 1995, he joined ABN AMRO's Irish corporate finance division, advising on fundraising, mergers and acquisitions, and flotations. Tullow was a client.
When Tullow founder Aidan Heavey hired him in 2000, Mr Hickey had already advised on pivotal deals, such as Tullow's audacious buy of BP's North Sea gas fields for £200m. Tullow bought competitor Energy Africa in a €409m reverse takeover in 2004 that doubled its production to 54,000 barrels a day and brought its market value to more than €1bn.
It was an immense deal for Mr Hickey to traffic through as CFO. In this and other deals, his job was to ensure money was available in the right place at the right time, in the UK, Africa and Asia.
Oil finds off Ghana in 2007 were double what was expected and Tullow's share price soared. Then came the hugely successful find in Uganda.
Having commuted from Dublin for years, Mr Hickey announced his resignation in April 2008, as he didn't wish to relocate to London, where Tullow now headquarters.
He won't have been short of job offers since. Last summer there was talk of hedge fund giant GLG Partners launching a listed oil production venture involving Mr Hickey, but nothing more has emerged. He is a non-executive director of PetroNeft and Ikon Science.