Activist investors are getting bolder and louder. From the
well-known players such as Third Point, Icahn or Cevian to the
smaller market participants, the terms of engagement between
shareholders and the companies they invest in are
But those targeting UK companies are increasingly aware of
the need to tread more carefully than in the US.
"In the UK, we still don’t want things to
become a public battle in the first instance," said panellist
Michael Henson, managing director of Sard Verbinnen in London
during IFLR's European M&A forum this week.
US hedge fund Elliott Management – one of the
most-profile investors responsible for dozens of campaigns
against sovereigns and corporates alike – was
criticised for what was perceived as its aggressive tactics
against InBev’s offer for UK-based drinks
company SABMiller, in which it holds a 14.6% stake.
"Proxy contests against activist shareholders are...