Gasfrac Energy Services Inc., which has been attempting to build market share in the U.S. hydraulic fracturing (fracking) market with its waterless technology, on Tuesday said CEO Zeke Zeringue and COO Steve Batchelor have left the company, and an operational review and management restructuring have begun.

Calgary-based Gasfrac, which expanded into the United States last year, markets a proprietary waterless fracking stimulation system that uses gelled liquefied propane gas (LPG) that can be recycled (see Shale Daily, Nov. 14, 2011). Gasfrac, which has seen its stock price fall almost 20% over the past three months, took a big dive on Tuesday, with shares on the Toronto Stock Exchange falling almost 17% (C48 cents) to end the day at C$2.43. More than 1.2 million shares traded hands; average volume is about 303,000.

Last month during a conference call to discuss 2Q2012 performance, Zeringue said the operator’s revenues were “significantly below our expectations for the quarter but we feel there were some positive inroads made that will help Gasfrac move forward in 3Q2012 and 4Q2012” (see Shale Daily, Aug. 13). He cited problems with an extended winter ice breakup in Canada, as well as problems that surfaced with BlackBrush Oil and Gas LP, which had signed a two-year contract with Gasfrac in February to use the LPG system in the Carrizo Springs area of the Eagle Ford Shale.

Zeringue said then Gasfrac was working to expand its customer base in the Permian Basin, the Niobrara and the Utica Shale.

Gasfrac CFO Jim Hill “will assume the role of acting president and CEO until a replacement can be found,” the company said. “The duties of the COO will in the interim be assumed by current operations personnel within Gasfrac.” The board said it plans to conduct a formal CEO search process “working through a search firm and other key advisers.”

The company “will be undertaking an operational review to ensure that its current infrastructure is appropriate to support operational efficiency while ensuring long term profitability, sustainably and the continued growth of the company’s proprietary LPG fracturing technology,” the company said. “In conjunction with this operational review, the board of directors will consider augmenting the current board with additional experience and expertise as Gasfrac continues to grow.”