(Paul White/(AP photo)

Repsol’s CEO courts skeptical investors after $13 billion deal

Based on analysts’ target prices, Repsol is expected to underperform the 18-member Bloomberg Intelligence Global Integrated Oil Index. That’s despite it being only one of five companies where profits are predicted to rise next year.
Oil field workers in 2012  drill into the Gypsum Hills near Medicine Lodge, Kan.   U.S. Steel said Tuesday it will lay off about 750 employees from two plants that make tubular steel, which is used in oil and gas drilling(AP Photo/Orlin Wagner, File)

Efficiency gains in the oil patch could be short lived, consultants say

Today’s efficiency gains, especially those driven by 20 to 30 percent discounts off the cost of oil field tools and services, could be short lived if drilling rigs ride high again after the end of the downturn, which will come sooner or later.
(Ty Wright/Bloomberg)

Willbros continues to sell off business units after spate of investor activism

The move comes after Willbros last week agreed to annual elections for everyone on its board of directors instead of the current system of staggered, three-year terms. Investor groups contended that more accountability is needed to move past allegations of mismanagement and entrenched cronyism.
Furmanite service technicians install a custom-engineered leak sealing enclosure to prevent their client from having to shut down a process unit. (Furmanite)

Furmanite looks to make peace with activist investors after proxy battle

Furmanite set its annual meeting for June 30 in Houston after resolving an invective-filled proxy battle in May that ended with major concessions made to activist investors. The meeting was originally delayed from April, when investors complained it was being held in Delaware to avoid a confrontation. Then, it was delayed again from May 7 when a settlement agreement was reached.
An Exterran Partners midstream compressor. (Exterran)

Exterran poaches Houston boss from GE Oil & Gas to head spinoff

Way, the CEO of drilling and surface production for GE in Houston, will become the president and CEO of the unnamed spinoff that is supposed to launch in the third quarter of the year.
(Nabors photo)

Nabors shareholders OK executive pay after overhaul

Investors have given Nabors Industries its first symbolic nod of approval on its executive compensation, a sign the land driller’s efforts to rein in large paydays have paid off.
Laborers' International Union of North America (LiUNA) members cheer in support of a speaker during a State Department public hearing on the Keystone XL pipeline in Washington, D.C., U.S., on Friday, Oct. 7, 2011. (Andrew Harrer/Bloomberg)

Activist investors win victory against Willbros Group board

The Laborers’ International Union of North America, or LIUNA, that led the push said that about 60 percent of voting shares approved the non-binding proposal to eliminate Willbros’ current system of staggered three-year terms for its board of directors. Investor groups contended that more accountability was needed to move past allegations of mismanagement and entrenched cronyism.
Logo of Willbros Group Inc., a Houston-based energy engineering and contracting company.

Willbros Group faces off against activist investors

The Houston-based energy engineering and construction company opposes the proposal to eliminate its current system of staggered three-year terms for its board of directors. But some investor groups contend wholesale changes are needed in an environment of mismanagement and entrenched cronyism.
Man looking through office blinds

COMMENTARY: Silence is not golden when it comes to whistleblower law

The recent federal action against Houston-based KBR for an overly broad confidentiality clause that could stifle whistleblowing employees reverberated through the corporate corridors of America.
(AP Photo/Lisa Poole, File)

Fortune 500: Oil prices take slight toll on rankings for Houston companies

Some Houston-based oil and gas companies saw their rankings slip this year after months of low commodities prices hammered the industry.