Hot Growth Special Report 2006 >



Berry Petroleum (BRY)

Berry Petroleum traces its roots back to 1909 and the fertile fields of California's San Joaquin Valley. Company founder Clarence Berry was a farmer from Fresno, who first struck it rich during the Alaskan gold rush. Although the company has expanded since then into Utah, Colorado, and North Dakota, it's still based in Bakersfield, and 88% of its reserves lie in the Golden State. Berry's focus is heavy oil -- a viscous blend of crude that requires special techniques to coax it from the earth. As such, it's appropriate that CEO Robert Heinemann is a former chief technology officer at oil services giant Halliburton. With crude prices on a tear, Berry's profits have tripled in the past two years, to $112 million, on revenues of $400 million. Old Mr. Berry would be proud.

Company Info

2005 Rank


Market Value*
($ Millions)


($ Millions)


Sales Growth
(3-yr. avg. annual)

46.4 %

($ Millions)


Profit Growth
(3-yr. avg. annual)

60.3 %

Return on Inv. Capital (3-yr.)

18.6 %

Share Price
12-Mo. Hi/Lo


Share Price
As of 4/28/06


Return on Equity

34.1 %

P/E Ratio


No. of Employees


Industry Oil & Gas Exploration & Production


Location Bakersfield, Calif.
Phone 661 616-3900
*Trailing 12 months
Stock price data as of 4/28/06
DATA: Standard & Poor's Compustat

Related Articles

A Buffett-Style Performance

Company Snapshot

Berry Petroleum engages in the production, development, acquisition, exploitation, and exploration of crude oil and natural gas in the U.S. Its principal reserves and producing properties are located in California, Utah, and Colorado. The company owns and operates working interests in 38 properties located in the Midway-Sunset field; the McVan property, which consists of 560 acres in the Poso Creek field; nine leases and four fee properties totaling approximately 965 acres in the Placerita field; and working interest in six leases totaling 8,563 acres in the Montalvo field in California. It also has interests in the Brundage Canyon leasehold in Duchesne County, Utah; and 25% working interest in Lake Canyon Prospect, Utah. In addition, the company owns working interest in three acreage blocks in Big Wash Unit, Utah; and 50% in 186,000 gross acres located in the Williston Basin in North Dakota. As of Dec. 31, 2005, its estimated proved reserves were 126 million barrels of oil equivalent. The company markets its crude oil to independent marketers and oil refining companies. Berry Petroleum was founded in 1909 and has its headquarters in Bakersfield, Calif.

Data provided by Capital IQ
Robert F. Heinemann

Robert F. Heinemann, 52

Chief Executive Officer, President and Director

Total Compensation*

$ 1,511,483

Total Options Value*

$ 4,152,800

* Fiscal Year 2005

Executive Bio

Robert Heinemann has been a director of Berry Petroleum since 2002. Heinemann has been president and chief executive officer of Berry Petroleum since June, 2004. Heinemann has served as chairman of the board of Berry Petroleum since April, 2004, and served as interim president and CEO since April, 2004. He is an energy consultant. From 2000 until 2002, he served as senior vice-president and chief technology officer of Halliburton and as chairman of the Halliburton Technology Advisory Committee. From 1981 to 1999, he was with Mobil Oil, where he served in a variety of positions in the energy and technical fields, including vice-president of Mobil Technology and general manager of the Mobil Exploration & Producing Technical Center.

Management Team

Key Executives

Robert F. Heinemann; Bruce S. Kelso; Dan Anderson; Michael Duginski; Ralph J. Goehring; Kenneth A. Olson; Donald A. Dale; Brian L. Rehkopf; George T. Crawford; Shawn M. Canaday

Board Directors

Stephen L. Cropper; Robert F. Heinemann; Ralph B. Busch; William E. Bush; J. Herbert Gaul; Martin H. Young; Thomas J. Jamieson; Joseph H. Bryant; J. Keller

Executive Data provided by Capital IQ