Tag Archives: CFO

Luby’s CFO leaves as it winds down its operations

Steve Goodweather, the CFO of Luby’s Inc has resigned. He will be replaced by interim CFO Eric Montague who will continue to be employed by Winthrop Capital Advisors. They have been advising the company as it winds down its operations.



Luby’s, whose shares are still trading on the NYSE (market cap $126 million), has now sold all its Luby’s cafeterias and Fuddruckers restaurants. Those deals were announced in June. However it still owns 54 real estate locations that it is now in the process of selling. Luby’s also still has to sell its Culinary Contract Services business.

Mr. Goodweather joined Luby’s in 2006 as the Director of Financial Planning and Analysis and became CFO in April 2020. He will receive a severance of one year’s base salary ($215,000). 16,000 shares of restricted stock will also vest, worth about $64,000. Previous CFO Scott Gray, left in April 2020 with a $105,231 severance. Mr. Gray had been the CFO since 2007.

Luby’s will pay Winthrop Capital Advisors a monthly fee of $10,000 for the services of Mr. Montague.

SEC filing – Luby’s CFO resigns

Drilling contractor replaces CEO and CFO

Credit: Marine Traffic

Valaris, the offshore drilling contractor that exited bankruptcy proceedings in April 2021, has changed out its CEO and CFO. Thomas Burke, CEO since April 2019, has stepped down, to be replaced by interim CEO Anton Dibowitz. Jon Baksht, CFO since June 2019, is replaced by interim CFO Darin Gibbins.



Valaris has its corporate offices in London, though most of its management are (or were) based in Houston. The company was formerly known as Ensco. It acquired Pride International in 2011 and Rowan in 2019, at which point it changed its name to Valaris.

Valaris entered Chapter 11 bankruptcy in August 2020 and exited with $7.1 billion of debt converted to equity. It currently has a market capitalization of $1.9 billion.

CEO severance

Mr. Burke had a base salary of $855,000. He will receive a severance of 2 times base salary ($1.7 million), plus 2 times average bonus or target bonus (110% of base or $1.88 million), plus a pro-rated target bonus for 2021 ($0.6 million). That’s $4.2 million in total.

Mr. Burke was the CEO of Rowan, prior to its merger with Ensco. After he was appointed CEO in April 2019, he received a cash bonus in 2019 of $3.9 million, including $3.0 million as a result of meeting cost reduction targets following the merger. From April 2020 until June 2021, quarterly cash bonuses were paid out in lieu of stock options. As a result Mr. Burke earned another $4.7 million for 2020. The 2021 bonuses paid out have not yet been disclosed.

The company also incurred $0.4 million in overseas allowances in 2019 for Mr. Burke in respect of his move from Houston to London. That includes housing, child tuition and tax equalization.

Mr. Burke will continue to serve on the Board of Managers of Saudi Aramco Rowan Offshore Drilling, the company’s 50/50 joint venture with Saudi Aramco. He will receive an annual retainer of $150,00 for this role.

CFO Severance

Interim CEO Anton Dibowitz currently serves on the newly-constituted Board of Directors and was formerly the CEO of Seadrill.

Mr. Baksht had a base salary of $550,000. He will receive a severance of 2 times base salary ($1.1 million), plus 2 times target annual bonus (85% of base or $935,000), plus a pro-rated target bonus for 2021 ($312,000). That’s $2.35 million.

Mr. Baksht received cash bonuses of $3 million in 2020. The company also incurred $0.4 million in overseas allowances for Mr. Baksht in 2019 as well.

Interim CFO Darin Gibbins joined Rowan in 2006 and is currently the VP of Investor Relations and Treasurer. He will receive a annual salary of $375,000.

SEC filing – Valaris CEO and CFO change

CFO at Sugar Land refiner steps down

Tracy Jackson has resigned as CFO of Sugar Land-based CVR Energy, with immediate effect. She is replaced, on an interim basis, by Dane Neumann, VP – Finance and Treasurer.



No reason was given for Ms. Jackson’s departure and no severance details were disclosed. [UPDATE 08-25-21 – The company filed an update. Ms. Jackson will get $789,000 through August 2024.]. However, there is clearly some turmoil at the company, as Matthew Bley also resigned last month as the Chief Accounting Officer. Ms. Jackson joined CVR in 2018 from San Antonio-based Andeavor. Mr Bley joined the same day and had worked with Ms. Jackson at Andeavor.

CVR operates two refineries in Kansas and Oklahoma as well as related pipelines and infrastructure. Activist investor, Carl Icahn, owns 72% of CVR, which has a market capitalization of $1.3 billion.

Until recently CVR also owned a 15% stake in Delek, a convenience store fuel retailer. Mr. Icahn lost a recent proxy battle with Delek when his three proposed board nominees failed to get elected. As a result, in June, CVR issued a special dividend of $492 million comprising $241 million in cash and the remainder in shares of Delek.

Mr. Neumann joined CVR in June 2018 and also worked for Andeavor and its affiliates from March 2011 until June 2018.

Jeffrey Conaway has been appointed Chief Accounting Officer, replacing Mr. Bley. He joined the company in August 2020, having previously been with Patterson-UTI Energy

SEC filing – CVR refining – CFO steps down

Senior management changes at seismic company

MIND Technology, a provider of seismic equipment, based in The Woodlands, has announced changes to its senior management. Guy Malden, Co-CEO and Executive VP of Marine Operations will retire at the end of the year. Rob Capps, Co-CEO and CFO, will become sole CEO. Mark Cox, currently the Chief Accounting Officer, steps up to CFO.



The company was formed in 1987 by Billy Mitcham and was originally called Mitcham Industries. It went public in 1995 and had its head office in Huntsville. Mr. Mitcham was CEO until he died in September 2015. Four days prior, Messrs. Malden and Capps had been appointed co-COOs. After the death of Mr. Mitcham, they were appointed co-CEOs.

The name change and head office move to The Woodlands occurred in 2019. The company has revenues of $21 million and a market capitalization of $27 million. MIND started out as a lessor of seismic equipment but, in recent years, has moved into manufacturing. Last year, it decide to exit the leasing business completely, with the resulting closure of offices in Calgary, Bogota and Budapest.

Mr. Capps, 67, has been CFO since 2006. Mr. Cox, 61, joined the company in February 2017. Prior to that, he spent 7 years at Key Energy Services, where he was (at different times) the Controller and VP of Tax. He also worked at BJ Services for 18 years.

The Board has not yet determined whether to make any changes to the compensation of Mr. Capps or Mr. Cox.

MIND stands for Motivate, Innovate, Navigate, Discover

 

SEC filing – Mind Technology management changes

ExxonMobil appoints outsider as its new CFO

ExxonMobil has appointed Kathryn Mikells as its new CFO. She replaces Andrew Swiger, who has been the CFO since 2013. Mr Swiger is retiring in September after a 43-year career with the company. Exxon has a mandatory retirement age of 65.



The company has its corporate office in Irving, TX , though it has a large presence in Houston. It is unusual for Exxon to appoint an outsider for a senior executive position but it has been under pressure from activist shareholders recently (more on that below). Ms. Mikells is the first woman appointed to the Executive leadership team at Exxon.

Ms. Mikells has a diverse background. For the past four plus years, she has been based in London as the CFO of Diageo PLC, the drinks manufacturer. Ms. Mikells announced her resignation in January as she planned to return to the US.

Prior to that, she was CFO at Xerox (2013-2015), ADT (2012-2013) and Nalco, a chemicals company (2010-2011).  She worked at United Airlines in Chicago for 16 years, where she ended up as CFO. When United merged with Houston-based Continental Airlines in 2010 she lost out on the CFO position of the combined group to Continental CFO Zane Rowe.

Ms. Mikells will receive a base salary of $1.1 million.

Activist Investor

In June, an activist investor, Engine No 1, won three seats on the Board of Exxon, despite the objections of the company and its CEO, Darren Woods. The hedge fund, which only owns 0.02% of Exxon’s stock, argued that the company did not have a coherent plan for a transition to cleaner energy sources. It also argued that the company was too insular and needed outside perspectives. Other investors backed the hedge fund, mainly because Exxon’s recent financial performance has been shocking.

Poor financial performance

In the first decade of this century, Exxon had around $20 billion of net cash and was making a return on capital in excess of 25% a year. Now, net debt is nearly $50 billion and returns have fallen below 5%. As an example, the $41 billion acquisition of XTO Energy, a natural gas producer, in early 2010 was overpriced and ill-timed (the CEO at the time was Rex Tillerson).

Back in June, a report in Bloomberg stated that Exxon planned to reduce its headcount in the US offices by 5-10% annually for the next three to five years.

SEC filing – ExxonMobil CFO appointment

 

 

 

 

Southwestern Energy appoints new CFO

Southwestern Energy, based in Spring, has appointed Carl Giesler as its new CFO. He replaces Julian Bott, who died suddenly in January 2021. Michael Hancock, who has been interim CFO, will continue as VP – Finance and Treasurer.



Southwestern has a market capitalization of $3.7 billion. It is primarily a natural gas producer that has all its operations in Pennsylvania, Ohio and West Virginia. However, in June, it announced a deal to acquire Indigo Natural Resources for $2.7 billion. Indigo is a natural gas producer with operations in the Haynesville Basin in Louisiana.

Mr. Giesler joins from SandRidge Energy, where he had been CEO since April 2020. Co-incidentally, Mr. Bott was CFO at SandRidge prior to joining Southwestern.

Mr. Giesler was CEO of Jones Energy (from July 2018 to January 2020) and Miller Energy Resources (from September 2014 to July 2018). Both Jones and Miller Energy filed for bankruptcy during Mr. Giesler’s tenure. SandRidge is publicly-traded but has been struggling for a number of years. So, Mr. Giesler’s roles as CEO have all had a very heavy financial focus.

Mr. Giesler will receive a base salary of $525,000 and a one-time cash signing-on bonus of $500,000, to be paid on the one year anniversary of his employment.

SEC filing – Southwestern CFO appointment

Houston E&P company appoints London-based CFO

Vaalco Energy has appointed Ron Bain as its new CFO. He replaces Elizabeth Prochnow who retired in March.

Vaalco is based in the Westchase area of Houston and has a market capitalization of $182 million. Its main revenue is from offshore Gabon in West Africa. It also has an undeveloped block in offshore Equatorial Guinea.

Mr Bain will be based out of the London office. He was previously the CFO at Eland Oil & Gas Plc where he worked alongside CEO George Maxwell, who was appointed in April. Eland was an E&P company primarily focused on Nigeria.

Mr Bain previously worked for Baker Hughes and led the financial integration planning for the merger of Baker Hughes and GE Oil and Gas. Prior to that he was the regional accounting director for Europe, Africa and Russia for Baker Hughes.

Mr Bain will receive a base salary of $330,000.

SEC filing – Vaalco appoints Bain as CFO

Huntsman looks internally for its new CFO

Huntsman Corporation, based in The Woodlands, has appointed Phil Lister as its new CFO. He replaces Sean Douglas, who resigned in April to take a senior leadership position with The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.



Mr. Lister is currently the VP of Corporate Development, a role he has been in since May 2019. He has spent his entire career with the company or its predecessors. He started out his career with ICI in the UK, shortly before it was acquired by Huntsman in 1999.

No compensation was disclosed for Mr. Lister, other than he will receive an initial equity award of $610,000 that will vest over three years. By comparison, Mr. Douglas had a base salary of $650,000.

SEC filing – Huntsman appoints new CFO

Callon Petroleum appoints new CFO

Callon Petroleum has appointed Kevin Haggard as its new CFO. He replaces Jim Ulm, who announced in March that would be retiring. Mr. Ulm will continue in an advisory role to assist with the CFO transition.



The company is an E&P company focused on the Permian and Eagle Ford Basins and it has its head office in the Westchase area of Houston. The company currently has a market capitalization of $1.9 billion. However, it has debt of $3 billion, so its stock price is very sensitive to the price of oil.

Between 2016 and October 2020, Mr. Haggard was the VP and Treasurer of Noble Energy. At that point, Noble was acquired by Chevron. Prior to Noble, he held senior financial roles at other E&P companies. He started his career as an investment banker with Credit Suisse.

Mr. Haggard will receive a base salary of $450,000.

As an aside, Correne Loeffler, who was VP, Finance and Treasurer at Callon between April 2017 and July 2019, was recently appointed the CFO at The Howard Hughes Corporation.

SEC filing – Callon Haggard CFO appointment

CFO of Main Street Capital to depart

Brent Smith, the CFO of Main Street Capital, is leaving the company, effective August 31, 2021. He will be replaced by Jesse Morris, who will also retain his duties of Chief Operating Officer.

Main Street is a publicly-traded private equity company with a market capitalization of $2.8 billion. It has its head office in the Galleria area.



Rather bizarrely, the announcement was made through a SEC filing by MSC Income Fund, which is a closed-end investment company, advised by Main Street. The company itself has not yet issued a press release nor filed an 8-K with the SEC, even though they announced their Q1 results last Thursday.

Mr. Smith has been CFO and Treasurer since November 2014. He was previously the CFO of Cal Dive International. Cal Dive was a publicly-traded oilfield services company that filed for bankruptcy in 2015. Its assets were sold off to multiple buyers and the company was subsequently liquidated through a Chapter 7 filing.

Terms of Mr. Smith’s departure were not disclosed in the MSC filing, though it did refer to a retention agreement. Mr. Smith had a base salary of $361,250. According to the recent proxy filing, in the event of a termination of employment, any unvested shares would vest ($1.3 million at the end of 2020) but Mr. Smith would not receive any other payments.

I will update this post once more details are known

SEC filing – MSC Income Fund