Presented by Grant Thornton, Preng & Associates, Citigroup and The University of Oklahoma Price College of Business Energy Institute

Sam (Yinglin) Xu, 28

Director, Head of Oil and Gas Investment Banking, CohnReznick Capital Markets Securities, New York City

Led the firm’s origination and execution efforts with primary focus on advising upstream E&P companies in the U.S. and Canada by providing M&A and JV advisory, fairness opinions/ valuation, equity and debt capital market transactions execution and more. Involved in all areas of M&A transactions in the E&P sector across Permian, Bakken, Eagle Ford and the Gulf Coast in excess of $1.75 billion in asset value and financing.

Entrée to the industry: Worked in the investment banking division of KLR Group, managing two preferred equity vehicles for an operator in the Williston Basin with $26 million in combined yearly revenue. Led efforts resulting in $16.2 million in savings in development costs during her time as an engineer at BP.

Bridging the gap: Leverages technical background into energy finance to better understand clients’ needs. Through experience and fluency in Mandarin, initiated and led CohnReznick’s Asia outreach; acts as sole advisor for many undisclosed Asian investors and develops relationships with capital contacts in the continent.

Seeing it through: Led transaction execution efforts for $150 million HEYCO and Matador merger in the Delaware Basin, “the hardest deal, but the best experience.” Achieved success, despite a large amount of nondigitized data, through trust and close collaboration with clients.

Changing courses: Career epiphany following the Macondo incident inspired her to transition to investment banking. As an engineer, her focus was on the work itself; as a banker, she focuses on “the business impact and the project returns. I wanted to be able to see the bigger picture.”

Blazing a trail: Began building CohnReznick’s platform in the E&P space in early 2015. Invests a great deal of time and energy into building relationship and trust with clients. “Being a young, Asian and female director, it requires extra efforts to gain trust from company executives.”

Destination unknown: “The cyclical yet uncertain nature of this industry taught me to manage the knowns and unknowns and make decisions based on limited information. This skill set really helps me in in both my professional and personal lives.”

Audio Interview