Earthstone Energy Inc. appointed a new CEO on Jan. 30 as The Woodlands, Texas-based E&P’s former chief exec, Frank A. Lodzinski, transitions into a new role.
Effective April 1, Robert J. Anderson, current Earthstone president, will be appointed CEO. Lodzinski, an industry veteran with a track record of building and selling E&Ps, will become executive chairman.
For over a decade, Anderson has worked alongside Lodzinski in multiple ventures including Earthstone’s combination in 2014 with Oak Valley Resources LLC—a private company formed by Lodzinski.
“Since joining me in 2004, Robert has demonstrated his highly capable leadership in a variety of increasingly important roles,” Lodzinski said in a statement on Jan. 30. “Together, with the assistance of our other talented executives and staff, we have worked together to build and sell two prior profitable companies.”
According to his statement, Lodzinski will remain an integral part of the Earthstone team.
Anderson is a petroleum engineer with over 30 years of diversified domestic and international experience. He has served as president of Earthstone since March 2018.
Previously, he served as executive vice president of corporate development and engineering of Earthstone and in a similar capacity with Oak Valley until the closing of its strategic combination with Earthstone.
Anderson was also involved in the formation of Southern Bay Energy LLC, which Lodzinski founded in September 2004. The Southern Bay entities were merged into GeoResources Inc. in April 2007. GeoResources, led by Lodzinski, was later sold to Halcón Resources Corp. in 2012.
Additionally, Anderson’s career includes roles at AROC, Inc., Anadarko Petroleum Corp. and Vastar Resources/ARCO International.
Commenting on the leadership transition, Douglas E. Swanson Jr., a member of the Earthstone board and managing partner at EnCap Investments LP, thanked Lodzinski for his leadership and congratulated Anderson on the appointment saying: “We know that Robert will further the company’s high standards of performance, and we fully support Earthstone pursuing and completing a significant transaction to increase scale and further our objective of consolidating assets.”
Earthstone has primary assets in the Midland Basin of West Texas, which the company added to in 2017 through an all-stock acquisition on EnCap-backed Bold Energy III LLC.
In 2018, Earthstone was on the path to double its Midland Basin position through an agreement to acquire Sabalo Holdings LLC, another EnCap-backed company. However, a plunge in oil prices during fourth-quarter 2018 derailed the deal and, by late December, both companies agreed to terminate the acquisition agreement.
Despite the stumble, Lodzinski told an industry event held at the Petroleum Club of Houston last August that Earthstone is actively looking for another business combination.
“If there is a consolidation wave that happens amongst the smaller guys, I want to be one of the consolidators and the attributes of how we run our company is the reasoning for why we think we can be successful,” he said.
Earthstone also has a position of 14,300 net acres in the core of the Eagle Ford shale play in South Texas.
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