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Tribeca to push for BHP Billiton board overhaul

Tribeca Global Natural Resources Fund looks to start talks with BHP Billiton Group to push for the replacement of a number of the mining giant's incumbent directors, Bloomberg News wrote June 6.

Portfolio manager Craig Evans told Bloomberg in an interview that Tribeca believes five to six people out of BHP Billiton's 11 board members need to be replaced. The hedge fund previously called for the board overhaul in May.

Tribeca also urged the miner to spin off its onshore assets, in line with the earlier suggestion of its fellow activist shareholder Elliott Management Corp. to spin off about US$22 billion of its U.S. oil assets.

According to Evans, potential alternative directors in discussions with Tribeca include Australian and international candidates with experience in either the mining or petroleum sectors, or both industries.

The portfolio manager also noted that while Tribeca would have sufficient support from fellow investors to seek a vote on BHP Billiton's board overhaul, the hedge fund would only move to a public campaign if the miner does not respond to its proposed talks over the matter.

Tribeca has said the fund holds BHP Billiton's London and Sydney traded shares, Bloomberg further wrote, but did not disclose the full size of its holdings.

BHP Billiton declined to comment on the issue.