Seymour Schulich wants to bolster his position in Birchcliff Energy Ltd. but has no plans to acquire much more in his other energy investment, Pengrowth Energy Corp.
The former mining executive has been increasing his holdings in the two energy companies amid the commodities downturn. His most recent purchase, announced on Monday, was 2.5 million shares of Birchcliff, which bumped up his stake in the company to 14.2 per cent.
Mr. Schulich said he hopes to eventually own 15 per cent. "It's going to get bought out but not by me," he said. "I am only buying for investment purposes."
News of Mr. Schulich's latest buying spree sent Birchcliff's stock price up almost 5 per cent to $7.41 in Toronto on Monday. However, the stock is still trading well below the $15 share price reached during the commodities boom.
Mr. Schulich, a Canadian philanthropist, suggested he could sell some shares if Birchcliff reached $8 a piece.
"I say the stock is going ultimately to $12 but depending on what is going on, I might sell a little at $8. I don't want to be greedy and I have a lot of philanthropy to finance," he said.
Mr. Schulich's purchase comes after Birchcliff gobbled up oil and natural gas assets from Encana Corp. last year. He cited the company's low costs of production as one of Birchcliff's attributes.
As for Pengrowth, the billionaire investor said he would stay below 20 per cent so as not to trigger Canadian takeover requirements. Mr. Schulich amassed the large position in Pengrowth to prevent a hostile takeover bid, such as what happened with one of his previous energy investments.
Mr. Schulich is known for only holding a few investments. He also has a stake in Barrick Gold Corp.