I guess it was inevitable that American Energy Partners would close. It’s good to see that the companies that were part of American Energy Partners will continue to operate under their own separate management.
American Energy Partners, the independent producer founded in 2013 by Chesapeake Energy co-founder Aubrey McClendon, is closing, the company’s leadership team confirmed.
Nearly half the Oklahoma City, Oklahoma-based company’s 100 employees were laid off Wednesday, and the remaining employees have begun closing the company through a process expected to take two to four months, the Daily Oklahoman newspaper reported, citing a source knowledgeable of the situation.
American Energy Partners has shrunk in recent months as its oil and gas exploration units were spun off into several subsidiaries.
The shutdown is the first step in what is anticipated to be an extended process of untangling the estate of McClendon, who died March 2, in a fiery car crash one day after he was indicted on one count of conspiring to rig the price of oil and gas leases.
“After considerable thought and discussion with [founder] Aubrey McClendon’s family and our employees, we have made a collective decision to wind down the operations of American Energy Partners LP,” the company’s leadership team said, in a statement.
The statement was attributed to Scott R. Mueller, chief financial officer, Ryan A. Turner, chief investment officer Tom J. Blalock, chief legal officer.
At its peak, American Energy Partners raised more than $15 billion and employed about 800 people to create new exploration companies, Kallanish Energy reports.
Since McClendon’s death, the company has been led by Mueller, Turner and Blalock, who also is executor of McClendon’s estate.
“We are proud to have had the opportunity to work with Aubrey,” the leadership team said. “Through his strategic vision and tireless efforts along with the most dedicated employees in the industry, the numerous businesses we founded together have shown tremendous resiliency in the face of the historically difficult industry environment.”
Over the past two years, American Energy Partners created five independent, stand-alone companies, which are not affected by American Energy Partner’s actions.
The former American Energy Partner companies are Ascent Resources, Whitestar Energy, Permian Resources, Traverse Midstream and Heritage Resource Management. Each of those companies has its own management team and employees and is no longer affiliated with American Energy Partners.
McClendon’s estate has been entered into probate and a court in Oklahoma has begun to take petitions and hold hearings in the matter. His will was filed last month with the court.