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Investor Group Ups Its Stake in Hess

NEW YORK -- Despite an announcement by Hess Corp. to spin off or sell its downstream division -- including its entire retail business -- activist investor Elliott Management Corp. said these efforts are not enough. The hedge fund manager said today it slightly upped its stake in the energy company to 4.39 percent, in an effort to push forward its agenda.

As CSNews Online previously reported, Elliott Management originally purchased a 4-percent stake in Hess and quickly nominated five people to the oil company's board of directors. In addition, the hedge fund manager advised Hess to separate itself into three different companies.

Elliott Management's current 4.39-percent stock ownership position is the second largest next to CEO John Hess' 10-percent position in the company.

Hess responded to Elliott Management's requests by nominating six different people to its board of directors. The New York-based company added that Elliott Management hasn't taken into account how much its shares have risen recently.

Undeterred, Elliott Management continues to state Hess is worth much more than its current $71 share price. In fact, the hedge fund claimed Hess management was responsible for more than a "decade of failures" and could be worth as much as $128 per share if the changes it wants are implemented.

According to the Associated Press, Hess today called Elliott's latest statements "backward looking."

Hess has yet to announce if it will spin off or sell the 1,361 convenience stores and gas stations it operated as of Dec. 31.

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