Paul Singer, one of the financial world’s most aggressive activist investors, has taken a stake in Noble Energy Inc. (Nasdaq: NBL) as the producer continues to move toward a $5 billion acquisition by oil giant Chevron Corp. (NYSE: CVX).
The acquisition was first reported from the U.S. Federal Trade Commission’s early termination notice list, which is required when an investor takes a certain level of ownership in a company with the intention of making material strategy or leadership changes.
The filing on Tuesday did not disclose the size of the stake acquired by Singer’s Elliott Management Corp. As of Wednesday morning, Noble has not submitted a standard notice to the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission that is required when any party acquires more than 5% of a publicly traded company.
Singer is well-known for forcing board and management changes at companies. In February, he acquired a stake in Twitter Inc. (NYSE: TWTR) with the intent of forcing out founder and CEO Jack Dorsey, but later settled for multiple board seats being assigned to candidates he proposed.
He also has forced restructuring at Samsung, Cabela’s, mining company Alcoa and medical records software maker athenahealth in recent years.
In 2012, Singer and Elliott Management arranged to impound a training vessel owned by the Argentinian Navy to collect on sovereign debt judgments after the country defaulted on its bonds amid a severe economic crisis in 2002.
Chevron announced its intent to acquire Noble, Weld County’s second-largest oil producer, in late July with an all-stock offer. Shareholders of both companies are scheduled to vote on the deal on Oct. 2.
Noble produced 30.91 million barrels of oil and 215.18 million metric cubic feet of natural gas last year, according to data from the Colorado Oil and Gas Conservation Commission. Almost all of its Colorado production is in Weld County.
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