Icahn reportedly sold his stake in Occidental Petroleum after almost 3 years

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Carl Icahn speaking at Delivering Alpha in New York on September 13, 2016.

David A. Grogan | CNBC

Icahn, a critic of Occidental’s outbidding of Chevron in a May 2019 deal to buy Anadarko Petroleum with $10 billion in funding from Warren Buffett, had been campaigning for the ousting of CEO Vicki Hollub for nearly a year when Occidental’s shares plunged in March 2020 – allowing Icahn to increase his stake from 2.5% to 10%, according to the Journal.

Now shares of Occidental are skyrocketing, more than fivefold in value since falling below $10 per share in 2020, largely thanks to the recent rise in oil prices. Its shares closed Friday at $56.15 each; that’s just below what they were before the deal with Anadarko was finalized, according to the Journal.

Recently, Icahn reduced his position in Occidental and he sold the rest in recent days, according to a letter Icahn sent to Occidental’s board on Sunday. Icahn’s two representatives on Occidental’s board will also resign, the letter notes, as required by the a settlement agreement he had concluded with the company two years ago this month.

The Journal, citing sources “familiar with the matter,” reports that Icahn made about $1 billion in profit from the Western investment. Buffett, meanwhile, recently bought Occidental. Since Friday, Buffett’s Berkshire Hathaway declared to own about $5 billion of Western descent.

Icahn lately has focused on small utility company Southwest Gas, according to the Journal. Last week, the energy company announced its intention to spin off a subsidiary that Icahn had asked it to sell.

For more details, read the full Wall Street Journal report here.

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