Wednesday, 23 July 2014

Laughing stock

It looks like Pepsi's long-only shareholders are really piling the pressure on the company to give Nelson Peltz seats on the consumer giant's board.

The Financial Times is reporting that Calstrs, the California teacher's retirement system, has told Pepsi's senior independent director that Trian, Peltz's fund, could help Pepsi address its operational performance and open new management ideas, so the company should give Peltz a seat on the board.

Here is a link to the Financial Times piece on the topic:

During my final days at The Daily Telegraph just over a year ago, I broke the story on the front page of the newspaper's business section that Trian had secretly built stakes in Pepsi and Mondelez, which owns Cadbury, with view to either persuading both companies to merge or carrying out major disposals, such as Pepsi's snacks business.

Personally, I think this was one of my finest scoops. I mean how often is it that a UK-based newspaper reporter breaks a story about a leading shareholder activist targeting multi-billion, high-profile companies in the US?

Here is a link to that article:

However, without an immediate confirmation from the companies involved, I subsequently ended up as the laughing stock of the American financial media with many news outlets sceptical that my story was accurate.

Since then, though, Trian has come out an confirmed it has built up sizeable stakes in both Mondelez and Pepsi, with Peltz waging an increasingly bitter activist campaign against Pepsi's board. Fancy that!  

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