Peter Barker-Homek, the former chief executive officer (CEO) of Abu Dhabi National Energy Company (Taqa) is suing his former employer for up to $100m, according to reports in the US.
The Wall Street Journal reports that Barker-Homek filed a suit with the US District Court for the Eastern District of Michigan earlier in August, through his attorney Miller Barondess.
In the filing, Barker-Homek claims to have been forced out of the company after challenging alleged improprieties within the way it was run, the paper reports.
“Taqa has been informed about a complaint and demand for jury trial filed in the United States by its former CEO, Peter Barker Homek,” Taqa says in a statement to MEED.
“The Company takes any challenge to its reputation extremely seriously and will vigorously defend itself and the individuals named against the spurious allegations made in the filing. Taqa will respond to the filing in due course through the appropriate legal channels.”
Taqa announced in October 2009 that Barker-Homek had left the company with immediate effect to “pursue other career ambitions”.
“What I am going to do next will be announced in the next couple of weeks,” Barker-Homek told MEED at the time. “It will be in the energy sector and it is a very exciting opportunity.”
He was appointed CEO of Taqa in 2006.
Sources with close ties to the company say that they knew that Barker-Homek had been asked to leave, but that the reasons behind his departure had remained opaque.
“Clearly he was pushed,” says one former associate. “Just no-one knew why.”
Taqa is an investment vehicle for Abu Dhabi. Its operations cover upstream exploration and production, mid-stream activities including gas storage facilities in Europe and power generation and desalination. The company runs six independent water and power plants in the UAE and handles 98 per cent of Abu Dhabi’s water and electricity.
It has assets of more than AED86bn ($23.4bn) and produced revenues of AED16.8bn in 2008, while generating 1,069MW of power and producing 114,000 barrels a day of oil from reserves of 621 million barrels.