Wednesday, April 29, 2015

Bloomberg: DuPont Activist Trian Wins Partial Backing From ISS

Trian Fund Management, the activist investor that has called for a breakup of DuPont Co., won the backing of Institutional Shareholder Services Inc. for two nominees in its fight for seats on the chemical maker’s board.

DuPont shareholders should vote for Trian Chief Executive Officer Nelson Peltz and John H. Myers, a former CEO of General Electric Asset Management, as well as eight DuPont directors listed on the activist’s proxy card, ISS said Monday in a report. The proxy advisory firm also said votes should be withheld for Trian’s other two nominees.

“This is not a broken company - but there is compelling evidence that the dissidents are onto something in their critique,” ISS said.

ISS is one of the most influential firms that dispense corporate-governance advice to fund managers. Today’s recommendations stop short of a full endorsement of Trian’s campaign. The activist has sought a breakup of the 212-year-old company and the elimination of what it says are $4 billion of excess corporate expenses.

“The ISS recommendation was predictable,” said Damien Park, head of Hedge Fund Solutions LLC, which compiles data on activism. “They will typically suggest shareholders vote for one or two dissident nominees when a compelling case for change has been made.”

Read the entire article on Bloomberg