Noble Shareholders Approve $4.1 Billion Takeover by Chevron


(Bloomberg) — Noble Energy Inc. shareholders approved the company’s acquisition by Chevron Corp., cementing one of the U.S. oil industry’s biggest transactions this year.



The Kobe Chouest platform supply vessel sits anchored next to the Chevron Corp. Jack/St. Malo deepwater oil platform in the Gulf of Mexico in the aerial photograph taken off the coast of Louisiana.


© Photographer: Luke Sharrett/Bloomberg
The Kobe Chouest platform supply vessel sits anchored next to the Chevron Corp. Jack/St. Malo deepwater oil platform in the Gulf of Mexico in the aerial photograph taken off the coast of Louisiana.

The vote on Friday during a virtual shareholder meeting came despite opposition from Elliott Management Corp. The activist hedge fund was said to seek a break-up of the deal because it thought Chevron wasn’t paying enough. The biggest proxy-advisory firms disagreed and urged investors to support the tie-up.

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When Chevron agreed to buy Noble in an all-stock deal in July, the offer was valued at $5 billion and represented a premium of about 7.5% to the target company’s share price. Since then, the deal value has declined by almost $1 billion as the coronavirus-fueled collapse in crude demand hammered oil equities.

About 10% of votes were cast against the deal, according to a regulatory filing after U.S. stock markets closed.

For Noble, the acquisition offered a path forward at a time when peers are struggling to outlast stubbornly low oil prices and investor frustration with a sector that has largely failed to generate meaningful returns. Chevron, meanwhile, gained a massive natural gas presence in the Eastern Mediterranean, while beefing up its shale footprint back in the U.S. after it walked away from a deal to buy Anadarko Petroleum Corp. last year.

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