Jimmy Crain

Partner, EnCap Investments, Dallas

“At EnCap, every day brings new opportunities and challenges. I used to find that tiring. Now I realize that’s what makes my job exciting,” says Jimmy Crain, a partner at the private-equity firm. EnCap Investments, whose upstream portfolio stretches across major U.S. basins, and whose midstream component is EnCap Flatrock Midstream, is a prominent backer of North American oil and gas ventures.

Crain’s job is to “find the best and brightest management team members to run EnCap’s portfolio companies.” He also sits on the boards of these portfolio companies and serves “as a strategic partner as they make acquisitions and invest capital. I get to work side by side with some of the most talented leaders in the industry to build great companies,” he says.

Crain is part of the leadership team in EnCap’s Dallas office that has 13 investment professionals and manages over $5 billion of active equity commitments to portfolio companies.

Goals: “My biggest focus over the next five years is to do everything I can to help facilitate EnCap’s ongoing leadership transition and build on the incredible legacy of the firm and founders.”

Of EnCap, he says, “It feels presumptuous to suggest I have helped shaped an organization with a 30-year track record of success led by four pioneers in oil and gas private equity.” However, he adds, “I have had the opportunity to bring in several new management teams into our portfolio that have executed unique and creative transactions. For example, Raisa Energy is one of the first teams in our portfolio with a non-operated strategy and has developed creative ways to incorporate data analytics into its business plan.”

On industry: “I am fueled by my interactions with people. … I am blessed to be surrounded by incredibly talented people,” he says, noting that at the end of every day, he checks in with colleagues to make sure they have everything they need from him. “I don’t want to be the reason their work takes longer than it should. I believe the success or failure of EnCap over the long run will be more impacted by the people on our team than any market force we face.”

Quotable: “We all have a personal story to tell that can encourage or challenge someone today. It’s important for me to be willing to share and be willing to listen.”