Chesapeake Energy Corp.'s former pipeline subsidiary got a new name on Tuesday.
Access Midstream Partners made its debut on the New York Stock Exchange, trading under the ticker symbol “ACMP,” after the board of its general partner approved its name change.
“The board of directors and the management team believe the new name reflects the partnership's ability to provide producers reliable access to quality downstream markets and to provide investors access to growth in distributions and superior total returns,” CEO Mike Stice said in a statement.
Access' stock climbed 4 cents Tuesday, closing at $28.50 a unit.
The Oklahoma City-based partnership used to be known as Chesapeake Midstream Partners, but that name was destined to change after Global Infrastructure Partners completed its takeover of the general partner earlier this month.
The private equity firm helped Chesapeake form the midstream partnership in 2009 before acquiring the cash-strapped oil and natural gas company's interests earlier this month for $2 billion.
Global Infrastructure Partners also is negotiating with Chesapeake to acquire subsidiary Chesapeake Midstream Development LLC, while Access Midstream is looking to add some more of Chesapeake's natural gas gathering and processing assets in the Mid-Continent region.
Those deals could bring in another $2 billion for Chesapeake, which has been shedding assets to overcome a budget shortfall estimated to be as much as $22 million.
The Oklahoma City-based company has announced deals worth about $4.7 billion this year, with additional assets still up for sale. The biggest pieces are Chesapeake's acreage in west Texas' Permian Basin and a joint venture in the oil-rich Mississippian play in northern Oklahoma and southern Kansas.
Stice said he solicited suggestions for the partnership's new name from employees and investors, amassing a list of more than 100 possibilities.
He said Access was favored by the partnership's management team from the start.
“The term ‘access' resonated with the management team,” Stice said. “We provide producers access to markets. We provide employees access to good jobs. It just goes on and on.
“It just seemed to work for us. Surprisingly it wasn't taken.”
Stice said reaction to the new name has been positive so far.
“Names are really only what we make them,” he said, leaving the partnership to work on establishing a reputation like the one it enjoyed as Chesapeake Midstream Partners.
The partnership also is getting a new home.
Stice said some of Access' management moved Monday into one of two office towers purchased near Lincoln Boulevard and Interstate 44.
Most of Access' Oklahoma City-based employees will be housed in the north tower, which currently is undergoing renovations. Stice said officials hope that work will be done by the end of the year.
Stice also has been appointed to Access' board along with Robert S. Purgason and William J. Brilliant, the partnership announced Tuesday. Purgason is chief operating officer of the partnership's general partner and Brilliant is a principal of Global Infrastructure Partners.