By Ryan Dezember
Chesapeake Energy plans to spin off its oilfield service business next year in a public stock offering to establish the value of the unit to investors and pump up the share price of the parent company, Chief Executive Aubrey McClendon said in an interview Wednesday.
Chesapeake recently installed a management team for the collection of service businesses it has built over the years and plans to retain a majority stake–perhaps around 80%–in the company after it goes public, McClendon said on the sidelines of Stephens Fall Investment Conference.
Chesapeake will retain control of the service company’s board and will hold onto as much stock as it can while allowing a liquid market for the public shares, he added. Also, McClendon said, the company will continue to work primarily for Chesapeake, which is the most active driller in the U.S.