Activist investor Nelson Peltz is seeking several board seats at Walt Disney Co. after boosting his stake in the entertainment conglomerate, people with knowledge of the matter said.
(Bloomberg) — Activist investor Nelson Peltz is seeking several board seats at Walt Disney Co. after boosting his stake in the entertainment conglomerate, people with knowledge of the matter said.
Peltz’s Trian Fund Management increased its Disney holding in recent months to more than 30 million shares, one of the people said. The stake is currently worth at least $2.5 billion based on Friday’s closing price and would make Trian one of Disney’s biggest investors, data compiled by Bloomberg show.
Trian sees Disney stock as undervalued and believes it needs more accountability on its board, the person said, asking not to be identified because the information is private. It plans to seek multiple board nominations including one for Peltz, according to the people.
Disney shares rose as much as 1.8% in early New York trading Monday. The Wall Street Journal reported Trian’s move earlier, citing unidentified people. A representative for Trian declined to comment. Disney declined to comment.
Peltz and Trian waged a months-long campaign around 2022 to win a board seat at Disney. But the veteran investor later changed his mind and said in February he was dropping a proxy battle, citing cost cuts that returning Chief Executive Officer Bob Iger unveiled.
Read more: Peltz Says Disney Proxy Fight Is Over, Cites Iger Cost Cuts
Disney is grappling with historic industry shifts as consumers turn toward streaming services, rather than traditional TV or movie theaters. Iger has said the company may sell channels like ABC, and that it’s looking for a strategic partner at ESPN. The CEO returned to run the company in November after Disney’s board fired Bob Chapek.
Iger has since cut 7,000 jobs and said the company will reinstate a dividend after it was suspended during the pandemic.
–With assistance from Edwin Chan.
(Updates fourth paragraph with response from Disney)
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