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Ultra Petroleum Corp. Class Action Lawsuit

Case Summary

Company Name
Ultra Petroleum Corp.
Stock Symbol
UPLCQ
Class Period
April 13, 2017 to August 8, 2019
Court
District of Colorado

Robbins Geller Rudman & Dowd LLP filed a class action lawsuit seeking to represent purchasers of Ultra Petroleum Corp. common stock during the period between April 13, 2017 and August 8, 2019 (the “Class Period”).  The lawsuit charges certain of Ultra Petroleum’s current and former officers and/or directors with violations of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934.  The Ultra Petroleum class action lawsuit was commenced on September 1, 2020 in the District of Colorado and is captioned Subramanian v. Watford, No. 20-cv-2652.

Ultra Petroleum is an oil and gas development company with primary assets in the Pinedale and Jonah fields of the Green River Basin of southwest Wyoming.  Over 80% of Ultra Petroleum’s revenues have historically been derived from the development and sale of natural gas.  On May 14, 2020, Ultra Petroleum filed for bankruptcy protection and is not named as a defendant in the action.

The Ultra Petroleum class action lawsuit alleges that, throughout the Class Period, defendants: (i) materially overstated the value of Ultra Petroleum’s oil and gas reserves; (ii) materially misrepresented Ultra Petroleum’s ability to ramp up production and its financial flexibility; (iii) failed to disclose Ultra Petroleum’s extreme sensitivity to even a modest decline in natural gas prices; and (iv) concealed significant setbacks in Ultra Petroleum’s vaunted horizontal well drilling program. 

In April 2017, at the beginning of the Class Period, Ultra Petroleum exited a court-supervised reorganization under Chapter 11 of the U.S. Bankruptcy Code.  According to defendants, Ultra Petroleum exited the bankruptcy in “growth mode.”  Defendants stated that Ultra Petroleum was poised to maximize the value of its substantial oil and gas deposits (which they valued at $4.19 billion, including $1.5 billion of proved undeveloped reserves) through ramped up production in 2017 and 2018 and that Ultra Petroleum was on track to produce between 290 and 300 billion cubic feet equivalent (“Bcfe”) in 2017, with 25% production growth over these figures in 2018.  Defendants represented that Ultra Petroleum had the financial and production flexibility to weather even a low-commodity-price environment and was set to ramp up well development with 10 rigs operating by 2018 on the back of an estimated $788 million capital budget.  Accretive to this plan was the launch of a horizontal well drilling program, which Ultra Petroleum executives claimed was set to significantly expand the production capabilities of Ultra Petroleum’s existing wells. 

Then, beginning in August 2017, soon after exiting bankruptcy, Ultra Petroleum began issuing a series of revelations demonstrating that it could not grow production by any meaningful amount and that its wells were worth a fraction of the values previously represented.  Finally, on August 9, 2019, Ultra Petroleum announced disappointing results for the second quarter of 2019, disclosing that total revenues for the quarter had decreased 18%, that Ultra Petroleum’s horizontal well program had been effectively halted, and that it was lowering its 2019 projected capital investments to a range of $260 million to $290 million and annual production to a range of 238 to 244 Bcfe.  On this news, the price of Ultra Petroleum stock declined 31% to just $0.09 per share and continued to fall to just $0.01 per share, 99% below the stock’s Class Period high.  On August 22, 2019, Ultra Petroleum stock was delisted.  And in May 2020, Ultra Petroleum was forced to enter bankruptcy proceedings yet again in order to seek a court-ordered reorganization. 

The plaintiff is represented by Robbins Geller, which has extensive experience in prosecuting investor class actions including actions involving financial fraud.

Robbins Geller Rudman & Dowd LLP is one of the world’s leading law firms representing investors in securities class action litigation.  With 200 lawyers in 9 offices, Robbins Geller has obtained many of the largest securities class action recoveries in history.  For seven consecutive years, ISS Securities Class Action Services has ranked the Firm in its annual SCAS Top 50 Report as one of the top law firms in the world in both amount recovered for shareholders and total number of class action settlements.  Robbins Geller attorneys have helped shape the securities laws and have recovered tens of billions of dollars on behalf of aggrieved victims.  Beyond securing financial recoveries for defrauded investors, Robbins Geller also specializes in implementing corporate governance reforms, helping to improve the financial markets for investors worldwide.  Robbins Geller attorneys are consistently recognized by courts, professional organizations and the media as leading lawyers in the industry.

Press Release

ROBBINS GELLER RUDMAN & DOWD LLP FILES CLASS
ACTION SUIT AGAINST CERTAIN OFFICERS AND DIRECTORS OF ULTRA PETROLEUM CORP.

San Diego – September 1, 2020 – Robbins Geller Rudman & Dowd LLP (https://www.rgrdlaw.com/cases-ultra-petroleum-corp-class-action-lawsuit.html) today announced that it filed a class action seeking to represent purchasers of Ultra Petroleum Corp. (OTCMKTS:UPLCQ) common stock during the period between April 13, 2017 and August 8, 2019 (the “Class Period”).  This action was filed in the District of Colorado and is captioned Subramanian v. Watford, No. 20-cv-2652.

The Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995 permits any investor who purchased Ultra Petroleum common stock during the Class Period to seek appointment as lead plaintiff in the Ultra Petroleum class action lawsuit.  A lead plaintiff acts on behalf of all other class members in directing the Ultra Petroleum class action lawsuit.  The lead plaintiff can select a law firm of its choice to litigate the Ultra Petroleum class action lawsuit.  An investor’s ability to share in any potential future recovery of the Ultra Petroleum class action lawsuit is not dependent upon serving as lead plaintiff.  If you wish to serve as lead plaintiff in the Ultra Petroleum class action lawsuit, you must move the Court no later than 60 days from today.  If you wish to discuss the Ultra Petroleum class action lawsuit or have any questions concerning this notice or your rights or interests, please contact plaintiff’s counsel, Brian E. Cochran of Robbins Geller, at 800/449-4900 or 619/231-1058 or via e-mail at bcochran@rgrdlaw.com.  You can view a copy of the complaint as filed at https://www.rgrdlaw.com/cases-ultra-petroleum-corp-class-action-lawsuit.html.

The Ultra Petroleum class action lawsuit charges certain of Ultra Petroleum’s current and former officers and/or directors with violations of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934.  Ultra Petroleum is an oil and gas development company with primary assets in the Pinedale and Jonah fields of the Green River Basin of southwest Wyoming.  Over 80% of the Company’s revenues have historically been derived from the development and sale of natural gas.  On May 14, 2020, Ultra Petroleum filed for bankruptcy protection and is not named as a defendant in the action.

In April 2017, at the beginning of the Class Period, Ultra Petroleum exited a court-supervised reorganization under Chapter 11 of the U.S. Bankruptcy Code.  According to defendants, Ultra Petroleum exited the bankruptcy in “growth mode.”  Defendants stated that the Company was poised to maximize the value of its substantial oil and gas deposits (which they valued at $4.19 billion, including $1.5 billion of proved undeveloped reserves) through ramped up production in 2017 and 2018 and that Ultra Petroleum was on track to produce between 290 and 300 billion cubic feet equivalent (“Bcfe”) in 2017, with 25% production growth over these figures in 2018.  Defendants represented that the Company had the financial and production flexibility to weather even a low-commodity-price environment and was set to ramp up well development with 10 rigs operating by 2018 on the back of an estimated $788 million capital budget.  Accretive to this plan was the launch of a horizontal well drilling program, which Ultra Petroleum executives claimed was set to significantly expand the production capabilities of the Company’s existing wells. 

The complaint alleges that these and similar statements issued by defendants during the Class Period were materially false and misleading when made.  Throughout the Class Period, defendants, inter alia: (i) materially overstated the value of Ultra Petroleum’s oil and gas reserves; (ii) materially misrepresented the Company’s ability to ramp up production and its financial flexibility; (iii) failed to disclose the Company’s extreme sensitivity to even a modest decline in natural gas prices; and (iv) concealed significant setbacks in the Company’s vaunted horizontal well drilling program. 

Then, beginning in August 2017, soon after exiting bankruptcy, Ultra Petroleum began issuing a series of revelations demonstrating that it could not grow production by any meaningful amount and that its wells were worth a fraction of the values previously represented.  Finally, on August 9, 2019, Ultra Petroleum announced disappointing results for the second quarter of 2019, disclosing that total revenues for the quarter had decreased 18%, that the Company’s horizontal well program had been effectively halted, and that it was lowering its 2019 projected capital investments to a range of $260 million to $290 million and annual production to a range of 238 to 244 Bcfe.  On this news, the price of Ultra Petroleum stock declined 31% to just $0.09 per share and continued to fall to just $0.01 per share, 99% below the stock’s Class Period high.  On August 22, 2019, Ultra Petroleum stock was delisted.  And in May 2020, the Company was forced to enter bankruptcy proceedings yet again in order to seek a court-ordered reorganization. 

The plaintiff is represented by Robbins Geller, which has extensive experience in prosecuting investor class actions including actions involving financial fraud.

Robbins Geller Rudman & Dowd LLP is one of the world’s leading law firms representing investors in securities litigation.  With 200 lawyers in 9 offices, Robbins Geller has obtained many of the largest securities class action recoveries in history.  For seven consecutive years, ISS Securities Class Action Services has ranked the Firm in its annual SCAS Top 50 Report as one of the top law firms in the world in both amount recovered for shareholders and total number of class action settlements.  Robbins Geller attorneys have helped shape the securities laws and have recovered tens of billions of dollars on behalf of aggrieved victims.  Beyond securing financial recoveries for defrauded investors, Robbins Geller also specializes in implementing corporate governance reforms, helping to improve the financial markets for investors worldwide.  Robbins Geller attorneys are consistently recognized by courts, professional organizations and the media as leading lawyers in the industry.  Please visit http://www.rgrdlaw.com for more information.

Contact:

            Robbins Geller Rudman & Dowd LLP

            Brian E. Cochran, 800-449-4900

            bcochran@rgrdlaw.com

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