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What We Might Expect of Whiting Petroleum under New Leadership

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WLL’s new leadership

On October 24, 2017, Whiting Petroleum announced that Bradley J. Holly will take over as president and CEO (chief executive officer) after the existing CEO, James Volker, retires on December 31, 2017. Holly previously served as vice president of US Onshore Exploration and Production at Anadarko Petroleum (APC).

Investors will closely watch if the change entails any major shifts in WLL’s strategy and if any steps taken under the new management will change its existing asset portfolio.

For example, in its 3Q17 earnings conference, one analyst asked about the company’s strategy on future asset sales, and Whiting Petroleum’s management replied with the following response: “Will you just go ahead and wait until that’s passed to Brad or if you could just talk anything about potential investors for the rest of the year or into 2018?”

Jim Volker also responded ambiguously by saying, “I’m not going to say we’re going to sell anything,” but then went on to say that the “candidates” for potential sale are mostly in its non-core and non-operating areas.

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