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The Ansell project near Edson, Alta.

Gasfrac Energy Services Inc. has pushed back the date of its annual meeting in May to examine potential changes to its board of directors after an activist investor accumulated a large position.

Gasfrac, known for its unique oil and gas rock-fracturing technology, said the company is evaluating the changes after discussions with its shareholders. It did not name the investors involved in the talks.

However, New York-based hedge fund Nanes Balkany Partners LLC has amassed 3.3 million shares in the company, representing 5.13 per cent of the stock, according to Bloomberg data. That makes it one of Gasfrac's largest shareholders.

Neither Gasfrac nor Nanes Balkany officials were immediately available for comment. The annual meeting will now be held on May 27 rather than May 8, as previously scheduled.

Last month, Streetwise reported that Gasfrac, whose fracking technology involves the use of propane rather than water, could be the target of an activist investor following spikes in trading activity.

Nanes Balkany, run by Paris-born investor Julien Balkany, has focused on oil and gas companies. Mr. Balkany was recently quoted on The Deal Pipeline website as saying that energy services offered consolidation opportunities as the exploration and production market had become saturated with activists.

"Based on discussions with its shareholders, the board of directors of the company is evaluating potential changes to board composition to ensure that the board has all the necessary skills and expertise to optimize corporate performance relative to the company's renewed strategic focus," it said in a statement.

In addition, the company wants to make sure that any new board members have the opportunity to help choose a successor to chief executive officer James Hill, who is due to retire at the end of 2014, it said.

Follow Jeffrey Jones on Twitter: @the_Jeff_JonesOpens in a new window

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