TULSA — ONEOK Inc. trumpeted its story to shareholders who came to visit Wednesday and soon will take part of that history on the road.
The Tulsa-based natural gas firm gained approval for its 2-for-1 stock split later this month, a move indicating the strong rise in ONEOK's share price, from less than $30 to more than $80, over the past couple of years.
CEO and Chairman John Gibson also noted that the dividend paid out has more than doubled since 2006.
He also said that the growth of ONEOK Partners LP, which owns the natural gas and natural gas liquids transport and processing assets nationwide, is fueling the parent firm's growth. ONEOK Inc. owns all of the general partner control and 43.4 percent of the partnership's units.
ONEOK Inc. received about $333 million in cash distributions from its partnership interest last year. He expects the parent ONEOK's net income to rise 18 percent annually through next year.
“This earnings growth will be driven primarily by ONEOK Partners,” Gibson said. “As ONEOK Partners grows, ONEOK grows.”
The company debuted its “Powered by ONE” mobile and interactive trailer in front of its downtown Tulsa headquarters. The traveling exhibit features touch-screen games recreating facets of the natural gas industry and high-tech details ONEOK's history.
“We felt like we needed to get out and tell our story,” said Terri Pirtle, executive director of ONEOK Foundation, which coordinated the Powered by ONE exhibit.
“This is the first public outing,” she said. “We're trying to do something relatable across our system, something mobile we could take to these communities.”
The next trip will be to Bushton, Kan., where ONEOK Partners owns and operates NGL fractionation units.
Bushton also is not far from Conway, Kan., the end point of the 750-mile Overland Pass NGL pipeline.
Other destinations will include the Oklahoma State University-Okmulgee campus, where ONEOK hopes to do some job recruitment, Pirtle pointed out. Powered by ONE includes games such as Pipeliner, where participants race against time to construction natural gas lines from the wellhead to the home, and SimpliCITY, which offers options to reduce carbon counts.
The stock split, which will create another 300 million outstanding shares, was approved by 82 percent of shareholders voting. They also OK'd all 12 directors' one-year board terms and advisory approval to the executive compensation plan by significant margins.
In addition to its partnership control, ONEOK Inc. also owns utilities Oklahoma Natural Gas, Texas Gas Service and Kansas Gas Service.