Billionaire activist investor Carl Icahn.

Michael Nagle / Getty Images

Aubrey McClendon on Carl Icahn: ‘He’ll Make a Lot of Money’

  • Joe Wertz

Michael Nagle / Getty Images

Billionaire activist investor Carl Icahn.

Nothing is official, but rumors circulated Monday that billionaire activist investor Carl Icahn is after a stake in Oklahoma City’s besieged natural gas giant.

This would be Icahn’s second dance with Chesapeake. He invested in 2010 and cashed out that same year, after the company’s stock had increased by 50 percent in six months, CEO Aubrey McClendon said Monday.

“He made over $500 million and called me to thank me when it was all over. I have a good relationship with Carl. If he comes in, I’m pretty confident that he’ll make a lot of money,” McClendon said in a conference call with analysts.

There haven’t been a public filing about Icahn’s investment thus far, but a source tells the Wall Street Journal it’s coming.

In late April, Icahn told CNBC, “I do think Chesapeake is undervalued.”

Icahn has made a lot of money by buying undervalued companies and pressuring directors and executives to make changes to drive up the stock price.

Icahn was a passive Chesapeake investor in 2010, but things could be different this time. “Chesapeake wasn’t under the kind of duress it’s under today,” the WSJ’s Paul Vigna reports.

One reason why Chesapeake had been tanking was because investors were concerned the board was too lenient in the running of the company. Icahn, who had taken a 5.8% stake in Chesapeake in 2010 before selling off, may want to implement a strict asset sale schedule and other rigorous measures if he buys back in.

The Icahn rumor moved Chesapeake’s stock up 4.8 percent by market close on Monday. Share’s of the company have fallen 57 percent since August, The Oklahoman’s Jay F. Marks reports.