Billionaire investor-philanthropist Warren Buffett has once again put his money in the oil sands, and Alberta's crude producers are cheering him on.
Buffet, also known as the 'Oracle of Omaha' because his investment moves are closely watched and mimicked by others, owns 40.1 million shares of Exxon Mobil, SEC filings revealed last week.
According to CNBC, this stake would make Buffet's conglomerate Berkshire Hathaway the 6th-biggest shareholder of Exxon, but it still represents only 0.9% of the energy giant's shares.
Exxon is a major player in Alberta's oil sands through its 70% owned stake in Imperial Oil – Canada's second-biggest integrated oil company.
Perhaps looking to take advantage of the Oracle's loyal following, oil sands junior Strata Oil & Gas (OTCQB:SOIGF) released a statement on Thursday to spread the word about Buffett's investment.
"Strata Oil views Buffett's increased stake in ExxonMobil as good news for Alberta's bitumen producers, and a real endorsement of the future potential of the resource," Strata Oil CEO Ron Daems said. "All these developments mean that momentum is building in Alberta's bitumen carbonate play, and Strata Oil has one of the largest and most attractive projects in the industry."
Since 2006, Starta Oil has held a 100% interest in a 52,000-acre property in the Peace River region of Alberta's Carbonate Triangle. The Cadotte project and holds 887 million recoverable barrels and is valued at $1.3 billion.
As revealed earlier this year, Buffett has also taken a half-billion dollar stake in Alberta's Suncor Energy – Canada's largest integrated energy company.
A senior oil analyst at Oppenheimer & Co spoke with the Financial Post last week, and had this to say about the Exxon buy:
“He likes buying big, established global brand names, and Exxon is a good flight-to-quality stock. The stock has also lagged the market in the last three and five years. That makes it a typical Warren Buffett holding.”