By Svea Herbst-Bayliss
NEW YORK (Reuters) – Activist investor Politan Capital Management said on Thursday that it has economic exposure to 4.5 million shares or 7.5% of biotechnology company Azenta Inc, according to a regulatory filing.
Politan, run by veteran fund manager Quentin Koffey, has successfully pushed for changes at managed care company Centene and medical devices maker Masimo.
It began building its position in Azenta during the second quarter and has significantly increased its stake from the 2 million shares it owned on June 30, regulatory filings show.
Politan said it now owned 4.13 million common shares or 6.87% of the company. It also had economic exposure to 385,196 notional shares of common stock, bringing the total aggregate economic exposure to 4.5 million shares of common stock, representing about 7.51% of the outstanding shares of the company.
Politan said it believed Azenta’s stock, which closed at $50.77 on Thursday, was undervalued and that it would engage with the company about its business, operations and financial condition. Since January the stock price has dropped 14%.
Investment firms are required to make a 13D filing after crossing the 5% ownership threshold and often these filings signal that an investor may have plans to push the company to make changes.
A representative for Azenta, which is based in Burlington, Massachusetts, was not immediately available for comment.
Koffey previously invested in Centene where the company settled to add five new directors and the CEO agreed to retire. At Masimo, where Koffey won a proxy contest earlier this year, he secured two board seats, including one for himself.
(Reporting by Svea Herbst-Bayliss; Editing by Stephen Coates)