Exxon Mobil Corp. added two new administrators to its board on Monday, because the beleaguered power firm tries to push again requires change from a pair of activist buyers.

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The Texas oil firm stated activist investor Jeffrey Ubben will be part of its board of administrators, alongside Michael Angelakis, CEO of Atairos Group and former CFO of Comcast Corp.

Exxon CEO Darren Woods stated the brand new administrators had been a part of an ongoing effort to refresh the corporate’s board of administrators and mirrored ongoing discussions with buyers.


“In case you have a look at the adjustments we have made, they’re in response to the altering position of the trade as we transfer in the direction of a low-carbon economic system,” Mr. Woods stated in an interview.

Exxon’s share value rose almost 5% on Monday afternoon.

Nonetheless, the board adjustments are unlikely to fulfill any of the activist buyers concentrating on Exxon. Engine No. 1 LLC, an activist fund based by know-how investor Chris James late final yr, stated Monday it was shifting ahead with a deliberate proxy struggle for 4 seats on the board of administration.

Exxon Mobil Corp. added two new administrators to its board on Monday, because the beleaguered power firm tries to push again requires change from a pair of activist buyers. Photographer: Callaghan O’Hare / Bloomberg by way of Getty Pictures

Exxon recorded a lack of $ 22 billion final yr, its first annual loss in fashionable historical past, and a few of the firm’s greatest buyers have compelled it to reveal extra about its carbon footprint and articulate a method clearer power transition, whereas some international locations try to wean themselves off. on fossil fuels.

“Whereas ExxonMobil has now acknowledged the necessity for a board change, what’s missing are administrators with a various monitor report of success within the power trade who can place the corporate for fulfillment within the power trade. a altering world, ”Engine No. 1 stated in a press release.

Exxon has been in talks with the opposite activist, DE Shaw Group, and the fund had beforehand indicated it may signal the brand new members of Exxon’s board of administrators. He stated on Monday he supported the brand new board members and Exxon’s deal with disciplining prices and capital spending.


“We consider these people will convey to the board important expertise in capital markets and capital allocation and convey important worth to the corporate because it focuses on its funding priorities whereas navigating within the transition to a low carbon future, ”stated Edwin Jager, CEO of DE Shaw. stated in a press release.

Exxon had beforehand added one other director, former CEO of Malaysian oil large Petronas, Wan Zulkiflee Wan Ariffin, and is stepping up investments in sustainability as the 2 activist buyers push for adjustments on the Irving-based firm, within the Texas.

Mr. Woods stated no additional board adjustments are presently being proposed, saying the brand new administrators meet the wants he has recognized internally.

Mr. Ubben, who based funding agency ValueAct, has proven curiosity in power corporations and different low-carbon power and know-how investments. His firm has invested in electrical truck start-up Nikola Corp., the place he’s a member of the board of administrators. Mr. Ubben additionally served on the board of administrators of Bausch Well being, previously Valeant Prescription drugs, during which ValueAct had invested. He left ValueAct final yr and stated he would deal with socially accountable investing.

Ubben has additionally invested $ 75 million in BP PLC in March and unsuccessfully approached the large oil firm to hitch its board of administrators, in keeping with individuals acquainted with the matter. He beforehand informed the Wall Road Journal that he would make investments $ 1 billion in a significant oil firm by way of his new firm, Inclusive Capital Companions.

Ubben stated he believes massive oil corporations ought to have extra money to spend on clear power by reducing prices, bills and dividends. A spokeswoman for Mr. Ubben declined to remark.

Angelakis heads Atairos, which suggests “partnership” in Greek, an funding firm that has taken giant and long-term stakes in a spread of corporations. He has served as chairman of the board of administrators of the Federal Reserve Financial institution of Philadelphia and serves on the boards of human sources firm TriNet Group Inc. and day by day buying and selling firm Groupon Inc.


Thus far, Exxon has averted diversifying into renewables, as BP and Royal Dutch Shell PLC have accomplished, opting as a substitute to double oil and fuel, saying the world will want giant quantities of fossil fuels. for many years.

In February, Exxon introduced a brand new enterprise unit that it stated would focus solely on applied sciences that cut back carbon emissions. The brand new enterprise, dubbed ‘low carbon options’, will make investments $ 3 billion by way of 2025 in low-emission power applied sciences, primarily in carbon seize and storage initiatives, which acquire carbon emissions from industrial processes or immediately from the air and deposit them underground.