At its annual shareholder meeting in Oklahoma City on Friday, Chesapeake Energy will confront an army of angry institutional investors shouting for a shake-up at the embattled company. Shareholders, already exercised about the company’s underperforming stock, have seized on revelations that Chesapeake’s chief executive took personal loans from the company’s lenders.
The effort is bearing fruit. Attempting to placate detractors, Chesapeake agreed this week to shuffle its board. The move followed a string of shareholder triumphs at Canadian Pacific Railway, Barclays and other companies.
“Chesapeake is an excellent example of the changing impact of shareholder activism and the effectiveness of that activism,” said Charles M. Elson, director of the John L. Weinberg Center for Corporate Governance at the University of Delaware.
“Years ago, it was really just the large pension funds and labor funds,” he said. “Today you’re seeing a very wide mix of people.” Mr. Elson noted that one of Chesapeake’s chief critics is Southeastern Asset Management, a large money manager known as a low-key investor.Page 2 of 8 | Prev Page | Next Page