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.”
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