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Oklahoma business briefs for Feb. 5

Oklahoma business briefs for Feb. 5
Modified: February 4, 2014 at 8:24 pm •  Published: February 4, 2014

Oklahoma briefs

Chesapeake welcomes Tolbert

Former Oklahoma Environment Secretary Miles Tolbert is joining Chesapeake Energy Corp. as associate general counsel for environment, health and safety, the company announced Tuesday. “Miles recognizes the importance of exploring and producing energy while protecting people, communities and the environment. His impressive background in environmental law and policy pairs well with our commitment to operational excellence and integrity,” CEO Doug Lawler said. "I look forward to working with Miles to ensure our company operates in an environmentally responsible manner, focused on stewardship, safety and risk mitigation.” Tolbert was Oklahoma’s environment secretary from 2003 to 2008, when he joined Crowe and Dunlevy as chairman of the firm’s environmental practice group. He will start at Chesapeake on Feb. 17.

$500M notes offering is planned

American Energy-Utica LLC plans to offer $500 million in convertible subordinated notes, the Oklahoma City-based company announced Tuesday. The notes can be converted into common stock if the company completes a public offering. American Energy-Utica intends to use proceeds from the offering to fund leasehold acqusitions, drilling programs and seismic data acquisitions.

Gulfport CEO will aid transition

Retiring Gulfport Energy Corp. CEO James D. Palm will be available to consult with company officials over the next three years, the period covered in his existing employment contract, according to a regulatory filing Tuesday. Palm, who is retiring Feb. 15, has agreed to advise to the company during the transition to a new CEO. Gulfport President Michael G. Moore will fill that post on an interim basis. Palm also has agreed not to compete with Gulfport over the next three years. Palm is specifically barred from working with former Chesapeake Energy Corp. CEO Aubrey McClendon and his new company, American Energy Partners LP. Palm will receive 80,000 shares of restricted Gulfport stock and a lump sum of $1.8 million, plus $200,000 a year for his consulting services.

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