The Battle for Disney: Peltz Vs. Iger in Corporate Showdown!

Nelson Peltz, through his investment firm Trian Partners, which holds a substantial $3 billion stake in Disney, is escalating his confrontation with the entertainment giant.

by Faruk Imamovic
SHARE
The Battle for Disney: Peltz Vs. Iger in Corporate Showdown!
© Getty Images Entertainment/Evan Agostini

Nelson Peltz, through his investment firm Trian Partners, which holds a substantial $3 billion stake in Disney, is escalating his confrontation with the entertainment giant. Peltz has announced a renewed proxy challenge against Disney, aiming to directly appeal to shareholders after CEO Bob Iger rebuffed his request for a board seat.

This move comes amid Trian's dissatisfaction with Disney's recent financial performance. In a statement, Trian highlighted the significant loss in shareholder value and Disney's underperformance: "Since we gave Disney the opportunity to prove it could 'right the ship' last February, up to our re-engagement weeks ago, shareholders lost $70 billion of value," the firm said.

"Disney's share price has underperformed proxy peers and the broader market over every relevant period during the last decade and over the tenure of each incumbent director."

Disney's Response and Shareholder Sentiments

Amidst this backdrop, Disney's stock performance has been lackluster, trailing behind benchmarks like the S&P 500 index.

This situation was exacerbated by Disney's valuation falling behind that of Netflix. In response to these challenges, Disney recently nominated new board members, including Morgan Stanley CEO James Gorman and former Sky chief Jeremy Darroch.

While Trian acknowledged this as an improvement, it expressed that these changes fell short of addressing the root causes of Disney's value erosion. "Disney's move...is an improvement from the status quo," but won't "address the root cause behind the significant value destruction and missteps that this board has overseen," Trian added.

On the other hand, Blackwells Capital, another Disney shareholder, backed Iger and praised the nominations. Blackwells' CEO Jason Aintabi criticized Peltz's proxy battle as disruptive and counterproductive. "Mr. Peltz and Trian need to withdraw this costly and disruptive effort to displace experienced voices in the boardroom and substitute them with Mr.

Peltz and his nominees," Aintabi said, advocating for the board's uninterrupted focus on driving value. Peltz's proxy battle against Disney underscores the growing trend of shareholder activism and its impact on corporate governance.

Disney
SHARE