With the new webinar series "#inFocus", M&A REVIEW EUROPE, a joint initiative of the German-speaking M&A REVIEW and French Fusions & Acquisitions, fills an existing gap in its service programme. During the last months we have often been asked whether we could offer not only relevant M&A articles but also regular webinars on current "hot" topics for the European M&A/PE community with our access to top-class speakers from the M&A scene.
In times like these, we are of course very happy to take such enquiries and requests as an opportunity to add new services to our portfolio. After all, we small publishing houses are also facing tough competition, which we can only overcome with high quality content and support of our partners.
In the second webinar of this series, which we intend to offer on a monthly basis, we will look at the development of Sharholder Activism in Europe. More detailed information will follow shorthly!
Many thanks to all partners involved!
The influence of so-called activist shareholders on strategic corporate decisions has grown steadily in recent years in its country of origin, the USA, but also in Europe. We have already reported several times over the past years in our magazines M&A REVIEW and Fusions & Acquisitions on the activities of this influential shareholder group on various occasions.
What are activist shareholders? They are minority shareholders, usually with stakes between 3% and 25% of the target company’s market capitalisation. The business model of activist investors is simple: they invest in a company in order to influence decisions made by management or other shareholders through the exercise of minority rights and/or public campaigns. Changes in strategy, in the portfolio or in the composition of the management or supervisory board are the declared goal.
But how have the activities of activist shareholders developed in the crisis year 2020? Were they able to take advantage of the weakening markets? Have the focal points of their activities changed? Where is the journey going and what are the activists’ next goals? All questions answered by our top experts.
We would like to express our sincere thanks to our authors Rich Thomas of Lazard, Olivier de Vilmorin and Arnaud Berdou of Sullivan & Cromwell, and Patrick Siebert of Alvarez & Marsal for their valuable as well as contributions to our M&A REVIEW EUROPE issue 02/2021.
Read our last M&A REVIEW EUROPE issue 02/2021 on Shareholder Acitivism for free download on https://ma-review.com/issues/.
Rich Thomas is a Managing Director in Lazard’s Shareholder Advisory group, where he leads the European practice for advising corporate clients shareholder related matters, including activism response, strategic investor relations, shareholder base enhancement and ESG communication.
Selected recent European advisory experience includes advising easyJet in the general meeting contested by Stelios Haji-Ioannou, Capgemini on its acquisition of Altran (Elliott contested), Kirkbi (LEGO family) in its acquisition of Merlin Entertainment (a ValueAct investment), Pernod Ricard in its engagement and negotiations with Elliott, EDP’s Supervisory Board in relation to Elliott’s white paper, Hammerson in its engagement, negotiations and settlement with Elliott, AkzoNobel on its defense from PPG’s unsolicited offer and its engagement with activist shareholder Elliott and Rolls-Royce on its settlement with ValueAct.
Olivier de Vilmorin is a partner in Sullivan & Cromwell’s Paris office and the head of the Firm’s European M&A practice. He is a member of the Paris and New York Bars. Olivier frequently advises both French and international clients on a wide variety of prominent mergers and acquisitions, private equity, and capital markets transactions.
Patrick Siebert is Managing Director with Alvarez & Marsal and Co-Leader of A&M Germany. Mr. Siebert brings 15 years of experience in restructuring and corporate transformation for both private and public companies across Europe, the U.S. and Asia.
Guillaume Granier is a Senior Managing Director and Head of FTI Consulting Strategic Communications France.
For more than 20 years, Mr Granier has advised clients confronted with critical reputational issues such as crisis, M&A transactions or complex advocacy campaigns.
Mr Granier has deep experience of working with diverse industries including Life Science & Healthcare, IT and Communications, Energy and Financial Services. Mr Granier regularly leads cross-border assignments involving a multi-stakeholder and multi-expertise approach, with recent achievements in legal disputes, activism, restructuring as well as foreign direct investment control. Mr Granier has also advised CEOs and C-Suite members on image building, thought leadership programs and capital market communications strategy.
Prior to joining FTI Consulting, Mr. Granier was a Vice-President at an international corporate communications firm. Mr Granier obtained a degree in Law from the Paris University Panthéon-Sorbonne and is a graduate of the Institut d’Etudes Politiques de Paris.