Shares of Golar LNG (NASDAQ:GLNG) rebounded more than 11% by 11:00 a.m. EDT on Thursday. Fueling the bounce back in the liquefied natural gas (LNG) stock were updates to two major issues that had been weighing on shares.
First, the company announced on Wednesday that the board of directors of Hygo Energy Transition accepted the leave-of-absence request of CEO Eduardo Antonello. Hygo, a joint venture between Golar and private equity company Stonepeak Infrastructure Partners, planned to go public this week. But they postponed the IPO following allegations of Antonello's involvement in a bribery scandal at a prior employer. The leave will enable him to concentrate on addressing those allegations while the board takes over his functions at Hygo.
Golar also made it clear that Antonello's leave "is not in any way linked to any action or misconduct during his tenure at Hygo where he has been instrumental in building a very robust integrated LNG business, delivering cheaper and cleaner energy to the Brazilian market."
Meanwhile, Golar said today that it has agreed to a revised schedule with BP (NYSE:BP) for the Greater Tortue Ahmeyim project. The companies had initially set a target date of 2022 to connect the Gimi floating LNG vessel to the gas field off Africa. But BP delayed that project due to the pandemic. With market conditions stabilizing, the companies have agreed to extend the connection date by 11 months.
Golar's issues with BP and, more recently, with Hygo Energy Transition have caused its shares to plunge more than 50% this year. It's getting some of that back today as it was able to set a new date with BP and put some distance between itself and the embattled CEO of its joint venture. But there's still lots of uncertainty with both of those issues, which could keep the weight on its stock until there's more clarity on any potential impact on the company's operations.