Walt Disney Teams Up with ValueAct to Face Off Against Billionaire Nelson Peltz's Activist Pressure

Walt Disney collaborates with ValueAct to tackle activist pressure from billionaire Nelson Peltz. Stay updated on the latest developments in the corporate showdown.

Jan 3, 2024 - 10:23
Jan 3, 2024 - 10:23
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Walt Disney Teams Up with ValueAct to Face Off Against Billionaire Nelson Peltz's Activist Pressure
Walt Disney Teams Up with ValueAct to Face Off Against Billionaire Nelson Peltz's Activist Pressure

Walt Disney Co.'s CEO, Bob Iger, is rallying support from ValueAct Capital Management to fend off pressure from activist investor Nelson Peltz. In a significant move, ValueAct pledges to back Disney's board nominees and collaborate on strategic decisions, providing a boost to Iger in the face of Trian Fund Management's influence.

Simultaneously, Blackwells Capital, an activist hedge fund aligned with Iger, puts forth three director nominations at Disney, supporting the CEO's strategy and countering Peltz's influence. This support not only marks a public relations victory for Iger but also intensifies pressure on Trian to articulate a clearer vision for Disney's future.

The backdrop for these developments involves Iger addressing challenges in Disney's financial performance, particularly in its streaming services and movie releases. Trian, holding approximately $3 billion in Disney stock, criticizes the company's succession plan and proposes board membership changes.

In contrast, Blackwells, a smaller fund with around $5 million in Disney shares, offers alternative nominees with a more collaborative approach. This move aims to appeal to Disney shareholders who favor board refreshment but object to the hostile approach taken by Trian's nominees.

ValueAct's significant stake in Disney is seen as a catalyst for more shareholder-friendly initiatives at the company. The joint efforts of ValueAct and Blackwells are geared towards steering Disney through the challenges of transformation in the rapidly evolving media industry.

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