Chesapeake Energy

Chesapeake Energy Corporation, an independent exploration and production company, engages in the acquisition, exploration, and development of properties for the production of oil, natural gas, and natural gas liquids from underground reservoirs in the United States. The company holds interests in natural gas resource plays in the Marcellus Shale in the northern Appalachian Basin in Pennsylvania and the Haynesville/Bossier Shales in northwestern Louisiana; and the liquids-rich resource play in the Eagle Ford Shale in South Texas. As of December 31, 2021, it owned interests in approximately 8,200 gross productive wells, including 6,500 wells with working interest and 1,700 wells with an overriding or royalty interest; and had estimated proved reserves of 661 million barrels of oil equivalent. The company was founded in 1989 and is headquartered in Oklahoma City, Oklahoma.


The company was founded in 1989 by Aubrey McClendon and Tom L. Ward with a $50,000 initial investment. McClendon named the company due to his love of the Chesapeake Bay region. Ward left the company in 2006 to establish SandRidge Energy.

In 1993, the company became a public company via an initial public offering, valuing the company at $25 million.Focusing on a strategy of drilling horizontal natural gas wells in unconventional reservoirs, the company built a sizable position in the Golden Trend and Sholem Alechem fields of South-central Oklahoma and in the Giddings field of Southeast Texas.In the mid-1990s, the company attempted to extend the Austin Chalk play into western and central Louisiana but struggled to do so.In 1997, the company wrote down the value of its assets by over $200 million, approximately equal to shareholder's equity at the time, due to low commodity prices and implemented a turnaround plan.In the early 2000s, after a rise in natural gas prices made it economically feasible, the company focused on unconventional drilling in carbonates, tight sandstone, and shale particularly in the Barnett Shale, Fayetteville Shale, and the Marcellus Formation.In 2006, the company was added to the S&P 500. It was removed from the index in 2018.In 2008, the company announced its discovery of the Haynesville Shale in East Texas and northwestern Louisiana.In 2009, the company partnered with Orange County Choppers to create the first chopper powered by compressed natural gas.In 2011, Chesapeake Energy agreed to a 12-year naming rights partnership with the Oklahoma City Thunder for naming and branding rights of the Paycom Center at a cost of $3 million per year, with annual increases of 3%. On April 20, 2021, the agreement was terminated.In June 2012, in response to shareholder concerns about corporate governance issues under McClendon's watch, the company appointed Archie W. Dunham as chairman, while Aubrey McClendon remained CEO.In December 2012, the company sold midstream assets for $2.16 billion.Effective April 1, 2013, Aubrey McClendon was forced to leave the company after revelations that he took a personal stake in Chesapeake wells and then used those investments as collateral for up to $1.1 billion in loans from banks that also financed the company.In May 2013, Robert Douglas Lawler, an executive of Anadarko Petroleum, was named CEO of the company.In 2013, Chesapeake sold 55,000 net acres in the Northern Eagle Ford Shale and 9,600 net acres in the Haynesville Shale to EXCO for aggregate proceeds of $1 billion.In December 2014, Chesapeake sold a large portion of its oil and gas assets in the Marcellus Formation and Utica Shale to Southwestern Energy for net proceeds of $4.975 billion. The transaction included approximately 413,000 net acres and 1,500 wells in northern West Virginia and southern Pennsylvania. Net production of the sold assets was 57,000 barrels of oil equivalent per day in December 2014.In 2014, the company also sold additional midstream assets for $520 million.In September 2015, the company announced layoffs of hundreds of people in Oklahoma City.On March 2, 2016, former CEO and co-founder Aubrey McClendon died in a single-occupant single-vehicle crash when he drove his vehicle directly into a concrete bridge embankment in Oklahoma City. It occurred the day after a United States Department of Justice federal grand jury indicted McClendon for violating antitrust laws during his leadership at Chesapeake.In 2017, the company sold assets in the Haynesville shale for $465 million.In January 2018, the company laid off 400 employees.In the first quarter of 2018, the company sold assets in Oklahoma for $500 million.In February 2019, the company acquired Texas oil producer WildHorse Resource Development for $4 billion in cash and stock.In June 2020, the company filed for bankruptcy protection with $7 billion in debt. It emerged from bankruptcy protection in February 2021.In April 2021, Doug Lawler resigned as CEO of the company and Mike Wichterich, Chair of the Board of Directors, was named interim-CEO.In November 2021, the company acquired Vine Energy, which operated in the Haynesville Shale.In March 2022, the company acquired Chief Oil & Gas.

Chesapeake's portfolio includes high-quality unconventional oil and natural gas assets in top U.S. onshore plays. Our value-driven strategy focuses on continuously generating capital efficiencies and operating with low, industry-leading production and G&A costs, along with a disciplined approach to liquidity. The safety of our employees, contractors, the public and the environment is our number one priority and reflects our commitment to conducting our business responsibly and living our core values. With innovative employees and advanced technical resources, we are creating a differential investment for our shareholders.

To be the energy company of choice through innovation, unrivaled performance, designed to grow and generate a competitive return.

Key Team

Mr. Benjamin E. Russ (Exec. VP, Gen. Counsel & Corp. Sec.)

Mr. Josh J. Viets (Exec. VP & COO)

Gregory M. Larson (VP of Accounting & Controller)

John Christ (VP & Chief Information Officer)

Mr. Bradley D. Sylvester CFA (VP of Investor Relations & Communications)

Jason Kurtz (VP of Marketing)

Toni Parks-Payne (VP of HR & Employee Services)

Recognition and Awards
Chesapeake was named a 2021 Fortune 500 company and is routinely included on the Barron’s 400, which is a list of the best-performing S&P 400 mid-cap stocks., In 2016, Chesapeake was included in the North American Energy Awards for excellence in safety, social responsibility, exploration and production and sustainable development.

Chesapeake Energy
Leadership team

Mr. Michael A. Wichterich (Exec. Chairman)

Mr. Domenic J. Dell'Osso Jr. (Pres, CEO & Director)

Mr. Mohit Singh (Exec. VP & CFO)

Products/ Services
Energy, Oil and Gas, Renewable Energy
Number of Employees
1,000 - 20,000
Oklahoma City, Oklahoma, United States
Company Registration
SEC CIK number: 0000895126
Net Income
1B - 20B
Above - 1B
Social Media
Sun Apr 21 2024

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