Valor Mineral Management
There are plenty of firms serving the needs of mineral owners, but observers took notice earlier this year when prominent energy leaders began joining a heretofore unknown Fort Worth company.
Members of the Moncrief family (John “Jammer” Moncrief, Tom Oil Moncrief and R. Wesley Moncrief Jr.) and several energy veterans from Midland in 2018 were announced as investors in and members in a Fort Worth company: Valor Mineral Management.
"We couldn't be more excited to join as advisors to this qualified team of mineral managers," Jammer Moncrief said earlier this year. "The Valor team's technical expertise and years of experience combined with the best-in-class technology they have developed, places Valor among the most qualified and respected mineral rights managers in the industry."
Most people consider anything to do with minerals to be pretty straight-forward, but that’s what has created a niche for Valor. Co-founders and co-CEOs Kevin Robnett, Clifton DuBose joined with co-founder/advisor Joseph DeWoody to establish a unique business model.
The three co-founders have successfully managed oil and gas interests for themselves and for others for years. They have negotiated leases and provided personal oversight with both small independent producers as well as the largest.
Rather than buy and sell mineral rights, Valor Mineral Management provides complex real-time analytics that confirm that royalty rights owners receive the full amount owed them by the terms of their contracts with energy producers.
“Owning oil and gas interests can be daunting and complex,” said DuBose of their 1-year-old company, which began operating fully this January.
DuBose makes the company’s mission clear.
“We provide comprehensive mineral management including research and evaluation of what clients own and whether mineral royalty owners are being paid correctly for their rights, and provide real-time feedback based on our findings. Our role is to ensure that each royalty owner knows what they own and is paid properly, and to provide the feedback in a timely actionable manner,” he said.
Many of Valor’s clients have multiple mineral interests, as it is common for families to inherit widespread interests across the United States.
“We employ a state-of-the-art digital platform featuring proprietary software to help our team better manage these vast, often dispersed assets. This program includes historical data, mapping, ownership audits (researching and confirming ownership rights), revenue mapping and full accounting services. We compare our data with state revenue numbers generated by the multiple oil and gas operators, thus providing timely and accurate data that benefits our clients. The ultimate goal is to ensure proper payments to our clients,” co-founder DeWoody said.
“There is simply no better team in the business to ensure that clients’ minerals are properly managed. Our superb team coupled with our unique use of data ensures that our client’s holdings are optimized to their maximum value,” he said.
“When I tell friends and clients that our mineral management firm depends upon our attorneys, CPAs and MBAs as much as it does our Certified Mineral Managers and Certified Professional Landmen, they’re astounded,” said co-founder and co-CEO Robnett.
While managing a family office’s mineral investments in San Antonio, Robnett created a proprietary software that allowed him to service a client’s entire portfolio – no matter how complex or how many properties owned – in a single tool that includes both accounting and land assets.
That’s where the comprehensive team of attorneys, CPAs and MBAs steps in, as they drill down into the detailed analysis each client’s portfolio.
Robnett adds, “Someone may own a small interest in a well that has minimal productivity and their interest may be a few dollars a month, while others are in the thousands or tens of thousands of dollars. A small miscalculation by the producer can cost the mineral rights owner a lot of money.”
DuBose shares that every audit has turned up some amount of money owed to the client, adding that, “We very frequently find tens of thousands of underpayments for our clients.” He said the software had previously led to one client recouping $160,000.
Valor Mineral Management’s clients range from individuals and partnerships to trusts, universities, institutions, investment funds and family offices. The Valor team understands from multiple perspectives, having been involved in every aspect of oil and gas acquisition, management and divestiture for decades.
After serving 10 years as a naval intelligence and operations officer and deploying to Afghanistan and North Africa, Robnett joined the office of a mentor and led a team that managed a sizable oil, gas and water investment.
He quickly discovered that existing industry software was inefficient, ineffective and too manual in its operations. As a result, he began creating the next wave of technology for evaluating and protecting royalty rights.
Why use “Valor” in the company name?
“Valor is defined as ‘great courage in the face of danger, or a seemingly difficult obstacle – especially battle,’” said Robnett. “Valor also references courage, bravery and having the backbone to make tough decisions. Helping people make tough decisions for their family’s financial future is another kind of battle, so we focus on displaying valor to the highest degree as we conduct due diligence for our clients.”
A number of complications can arise when researching someone’s mineral rights and their value. Among these are:
• Lost records occur over multiple generations when families lose or store files of correct ownership in disparate places
• Poor record-keeping may cause the rights of a property to be lost in a sea of paperwork. Some properties in the Eagle Ford Shale, for example, have changed operators as many as five times in the last 12 years.
• Lack of diligence from some energy companies. If a company meets the minimal requirement for the number of attempts to reach a royalty owner, it can legally send the check to the Texas Comptroller’s Office rather than make additional attempts to track down that owner.
• Far-ranging mineral rights owners. A recent survey of royalty owners in the Permian Basin revealed that a significant number of those individuals are not even Texans. Many of those live in California, Florida and New York.
• Some energy companies may try to re-interpret the language of an agreement and charge marketing and distribution fees that should not have been charged, as has been covered in this publication previously. Without a comprehensive ownership audit and revenue audit, rights holders may not know they have been shortchanged.
Valor Mineral Management operates with offices in Fort Worth and Midland, and eight of the company’s 11 employees are in Fort Worth. There is no shortage of opportunity awaiting the veteran-owned enterprise.
“Management fees are all over the place because one knows where to turn as an independent party. We have heard of competitors that often charge upwards of 47% in fees, which we feel is far beyond reason,” Robnett said. “We are here to do three things: aggregate and interpret data, monitor and evaluate payments and correspondence, and offer peace of mind that is rooted in our vast experience as oil and gas managers.”
Valor’s role, he adds, is to help owners optimize their mineral assets and provide security and clarity with their data grow with minimal effort on the owner’s part.
– FWBP Staff