Note: Scroll to the bottom for the most recent updates. You can also follow the play-by-play on Twitter by following @NewsOKEnergy.
Security is tight at the meeting. One shareholder had to leave his phone in his car after trying to enter the meeting.
CNBC is reporting that as many as seven of the nine Chesapeake directors could resign today.
We have two reporters tucked safely away from shareholders in a separate media room. No pictures are allowed. From our Jay Marks:
Not a lot to see. Room is maybe 20 by 25, with a red-carpeted stage-like area at front, with three monitors that will screen meeting. Nine black draped tables set up with four folding chairs at each one. Array of drinks, fresh fruit at back of the room, with hard copies of relevant materials.
About 20 people here so far.
A Chesapeake spokesman said the board is meeting right now and will break at 10 a.m. to begin the shareholder’s meeting. Meanwhile, there will be a conference call starting around then to talk about the sale announcement from this morning.
Chesapeake has reminded reporters in the media room that no recording is allowed. “We’re not even recording this meeting as a company.”
An outfit called the National Center for Public Policy Research plans to ask a question about
Aubrey McClendon’s Chesapeake’s donations to the Sierra Club a few years ago to help fund the environmental group’s “Beyond Coal” campaign.
Polite applause greets McClendon as the shareholder meeting gets underway.
Denver resident Gerald Armstrong has three minutes to present a proposal for Chesapeake to re-incorporate in Delaware.
We’re into the shareholder proposal section of the meeting. One proposal wanted the company to reincorporate in Delaware. Another asks the company to disclose its lobbying costs and contributions, as well as trade-association funding.
In the published proxy released a few weeks ago, Chesapeake’s board has recommended “No” votes against all the shareholder proposals.
They’re announcing the results of the votes. The only board members up for re-election, Burns Hargis and Richard K. Davidson, did not survive. Hargis, who is also president at Oklahoma State University, received 26 percent. Davidson received 27 percent.
Here’s a rundown of the other proposals:
–Reincorporate in Delaware: 53 percent Yes
–Lobbying disclosure: 36 percent Yes
–Eliminate super-majority requirement: 86 percent Yes
–Proxy access: 60 percent Yes
The meeting portion is over, and McClendon is now presenting an update on operations.
Here’s the official Chesapeake release on preliminary results from the meeting.
The meeting is now open for questions.
A representative of Carl Icahn is speaking from an Icahn letter. From our Jay Marks: “Icahn is pleased with the decision to reconstitute the board that will provide vigilant oversight of McClendon, a ‘great oil and gas man.’ A new chairman can focus on closing the funding gap, reducing debt. The board should consider all strategic alternatives, including potential sale.”
From analyst Alan Edgar (via Jay Marks): Edgar is pleased the company is rebuilding the board, but he’s concerned about low share price and “overwhelming” debt load. Edgar says at least six large oil companies must be lusting over Chesapeake assets. How can the board sell assets while appealing to such suitors, he asks.
Don’t forget, we’re trying to collect live tweets from the shareholder’s meeting over on Storify.
McClendon is getting questions from shareholders on Sierra Club donations and water consumption in hydraulic fracturing operations.
(via Jay Marks) McClendon rejects the media’s assertion that Chesapeake is not a well-run company. He says people fail to appreciate its successes. He also says people fail to recognize that natural gas will rebound. “American natural gas is the most undervalued resource in the world,” McClendon says
Some closing comments from McClendon: “The board has some work to do.”