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Tom Tom, clubbed


Gazette staff January 23rd, 2013

Remember when Reuters last year churned out a series of articles questioning the dealings of Chesapeake Energy CEO Aubrey McClendon?

Credit: Brad Gregg

Apparently, that was just a warm-up act.

Now, the news agency is examining SandRidge Energy and its CEO, Tom Ward. In a recent story, Reuters showed how some practices at SandRidge didn’t differ much from those at Chesapeake, which Ward had co-founded with McClendon.

Reuters reported that Ward received $75 million in personal loans from Bank of Oklahoma Chairman and CEO George Kaiser and opened the company’s books for review to secure the personal loan.

In addition, Reuters noted that Ward’s salary was $7 million more than the two men who served as CEOs of Chevron, a company 60 times the size of SandRidge. A chunk of that compensation came when SandRidge was going through financial difficulties, according to Reuters.

A major SandRidge shareholder, TPG-Axon, is calling for a replacement of the company’s board. Another shareholder group, Mount Kellett Capital Management, wants Ward suspended while an independent audit firm and law firm investigate allegations involving a trust headed by Ward’s son.

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