Mount Kellet Capital Management LP has been quiet since urging the board of directors at SandRidge Energy Inc. to replace Tom Ward as CEO, but the investment firm still wants changes at the Oklahoma City oil company.
Mount Kellett, which owns about 4.5 percent of SandRidge's outstanding stock, sent a letter to the board Nov. 15 calling for a new CEO and the addition of independent directors to help unlock the company's true value. The investment firm contends SandRidge is worth about three times more than its current stock price.
“Mount Kellett has been a long-term, patient shareholder in SandRidge,” a spokesman told The Oklahoman on Thursday. “We continue to believe that the company's assets are tremendously valuable and undervalued by the market today.
“We believe that changes in management are essential in order for the company to realize its potential for the benefit of all stockholders.”
Another institutional investor, TPG-Axon Capital, has expressed similar concerns about SandRidge. It has launched a consent solicitation to force a leadership change.
SandRidge's stock dipped nearly 5 percent Thursday, a day after the company announced it had struck a $2.6 billion deal to sell most of its holdings in west Texas' Permian Basin. It closed at $6.19, down 31 cents.
“Management is doing what we said we would do — staying true to our brand, doing things strategically and efficiently and once again making a move that creates tremendous value for the company and its shareholders,” SandRidge spokesman Greg Dewey said.
Mount Kellet had urged SandRidge to hold off on the sale of its Permian assets, which it estimated were worth up to $4 billion.
Jonathan Fiorello, Mount Kellett's chief operating officer, wrote last month that SandRidge should let a reconstituted board and management team decide its future direction.
“SandRidge has great assets and should be a great company,” he wrote, “but it is clear that it will not be without changes at the top.”