Encana is the former name of oil and gas company Ovintiv (Ovintiv Stock Quote, Charts, News, Analysts, Financials NYSE:OVV), which trades on both the New York Stock Exchange and the Toronto Stock Exchange.
Encana was a Calgary-based company with roots back to PanCanadian Petroleum Limited, which itself was a merger between Canadian Pacific Oil and Gas Limited and Central-Del Rio Oils Limited. PanCanadian had grants from the Canadian Pacific Railway dating back to the 1800’s, with Encana coming into existence in 2002 through a merger of PanCanadian’s spun-out oil and gas business with Rival Alberta Energy.
For a time the highest market cap company in Canada, Encana’s business was international, with aside from its Canadian holdings has oil and gas assets in the United States, Mexico, Europe and South America.
Later, Encana spun out Cenovus Energy, the company’s oil production and reserves, leaving natural gas as its focus, followed in 2012 by a joint-venture agreement with PetroChina which gave the latter a stake in some Encana assets in Canada.
A sector downturn in the mid-2010s helped precipitate the move to the US and name change.
“We are excited about our strategic transformation,” said CEO Doug Suttles in a release at the time of the proposed name change and move to the US in 2019. “A domicile in the United States will expose our company to increasingly larger pools of investment in U.S. index funds and passively managed accounts, as well as better align us with our U.S. peers.”
The loss of Encana was a major blow to Alberta’s oil and gas sector as well as to the Canadian business community, which viewed it as the dismantling and erosion of another titan of Canadian industry.
“I am troubled by the news that Encana is formally relocating its headquarters to the United States,” said Alberta Minister of Energy Sonya Savage in an October 2019 statement. “Sadly, I cannot say I am surprised, as Encana has been shifting its efforts to the U.S. for years, in large part due to harmful policies in Canada.”
Ovintiv is headquartered in Denver, Colorado and has annual revenue of $12 billion and a market capitalization of $10 billion. Year-to-date, Ovintiv shares are down about 30 per cent.