CEO, CFO depart SandRidge Energy; company cites ‘new strategic direction’

Citing a “new strategic direction” following discussions with large shareholders, SandRidge Energy Inc. said company Pres. and Chief Executive Officer James Bennett and Chief Financial Officer Julian Bott will depart the company.

Corrections were made to this story Feb. 12.

Citing a “new strategic direction” following discussions with large shareholders, SandRidge Energy Inc., Oklahoma City, said company Pres. and Chief Executive Officer James Bennett and Chief Financial Officer Julian Bott will depart the company (OGJ Online, June 21, 2013).

Bennett’s departure is effective Feb. 8. Bill Griffin, an independent director, will serve as interim president and CEO and will continue to serve on the board.

Bott will depart the company at the close of business on the date of filing the company’s 2017 annual report. Chief Accounting Officer Mike Johnson will to serve as interim CFO.

John Suter will continue as chief operating officer.

SandRidge has been in discussions with shareholders, including activist investor Carl Ichan, about company operations. In late 2017, SandRidge canceled its agreement to acquire Bonanza Creek Energy Inc., Denver (OGJ Online, Nov. 15, 2017). Icahn opposed the takeover. Icahn also expressed concerns about the company’s board members, calling for two members to resign.

In a Jan. 23 letter to shareholders, the company committed to “expanding dialog” with its shareholders. A release Feb. 8 was sent to update shareholders on its plan, including a “focused capital program with moderate outspend” and a reduction in ongoing general and administrative expenses.

The company’s 2018 budget includes $180-190 million in total capital expenditures, down from $247 million in 2017. A single-rig program in the NW STACK of the US Midcontinent will be primarily funded by a development agreement that provides an initial $100 million from its financial partner. SandRidge also will continue a single-rig drilling program in North Park basin.

G&A cash expenses will be cut by one-third to $36-39 million/year.

SandRidge Energy emerged from bankruptcy in October 2016 and was recently approached by Midstates Petroleum Co. Inc. to combine in an all-stock merger (OGJ Online, Feb. 6, 2017).

Contact Mikaila Adams at mikaila@pennwell.com.

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