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Calgary oil explorer Bellatrix target of activist investor Orange Partners

August 19, 2014

The Canadian Press

CALGARY - Calgary oil and gas developer Bellatrix Exploration Ltd. (TSX:BXE) has become the target of a U.S. activist investor.

New York-based Orange Capital LLC disclosed in regulatory filings Tuesday that it's bought a 5.3 per cent stake in Bellatrix, which has operations in British Columbia, Alberta and Saskatchewan.

The hedge fund said it plans to talk to the management of Bellatrix about ways to "maximize shareholder value."

That could include hiring an outside adviser to make recommendations on "strategic alternatives, capital allocation and improved investor communications" as well as making changes to the energy company's board of directors.

Orange also wants Bellatrix to take steps to bring its valuation "in line with its intrinsic value," adding the company currently lags its Canadian peers.

As well, it wants Bellatrix to stop diluting its share price by issuing stock and to explore a potential joint-venture, spinout or sale of its midstream assets

Shares in Bellatrix were up more than eight per cent at $8.58 on the Toronto Stock Exchange around mid-day Tuesday.

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Source: Canadian Press DataFile

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