Carl-Henric Svanberg

Carl-Henric Svanberg (born 29 May 1952), is a Swedish businessman and current Chairman of Volvo.[1] He was Chairman of BP for eight years, from 2010 to 2018.[2]

Carl-Henric Svanberg
Born (1952-05-29) 29 May 1952
Porjus, Sweden
OccupationChairman of Volvo

Life and career

Svanberg holds a Master's degree in Applied Physics from the Linköping Institute of Technology and a Bachelor's degree in Business Administration from Uppsala University. Svanberg holds honorary doctorates from Luleå University of Technology and Linköping University.

Svanberg served as CEO of telecom company Ericsson from 8 April 2003 to 31 December 2009. Following his resignation, he remained on the board of Ericsson and holds 3,234,441 shares in the company.[3][4]

Before joining Ericsson, he led another Swedish industrial company - Assa Abloy. Svanberg serves on other boards, including:

Svanberg joined the BP board as chairman-designate on 1 September 2009, and succeeded Peter Sutherland as chairman on 1 January 2010.[5]

He and his wife Agneta, an associate professor at Uppsala University, filed for divorce on 17 September 2009. They were married for 26 years and have three children together. Svanberg is a dedicated fan of Djurgårdens IF and serves on the board of Djurgårdens IF Hockey. He is a former ice hockey player himself, having played for IF Björklöven in Umeå during his youth.

Svanberg has received the Lifetime Achievement Award, given out by the security trade magazine Detektor, for his work in Assa Abloy and Securitas.[6]

Deepwater Horizon oil spill

On 16 June 2010, Svanberg met with US President Barack Obama to discuss BP's responsibility for the effects of the Deepwater Horizon oil spill. He caused a PR uproar by afterwards expressing BP's concern for the common people along the Gulf Coast of the United States whose livelihood is threatened by the oil spill by saying, "We care about the small people", drawing upon a Swedish phrase, den lilla människan. The correct translation of the Swedish phrase would have been "the common person". Svanberg subsequently apologized for the term and attributed his unfortunate choice of words to a "slip in translation".[7]


  1. Jan Malmgren. Svanberg new chairman of Volvo. Svenska Dagbladet (Swedish), 6 December 2011.
  2. Kent, Sarah. "BP Chairman Carl-Henric Svanberg to Retire". WSJ. Retrieved 19 July 2019.
  4. "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 20 August 2010. Retrieved 2010-06-06.CS1 maint: archived copy as title (link)
  5. "BP Selects New Chairman to Succeed Peter Sutherland" (Press release). BP. 25 June 2009. Archived from the original on 4 July 2013. Retrieved 2010-06-17.
  6. "Carl-Henric Svanberg fick Detektors hederspris". (in Swedish).
  7. Ann Gerhart. BP chairman talks about the 'small people,' further angering gulf. The Washington Post, 17 June 2010.

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