disney Nelson Peltz’s activist firm Trian Fund Management faces a proxy battle as it seeks board seats.
Peltz spoke on CNBC’s “Squawk on the Street” on Thursday, claiming his company had a dispute with Disney, and took the matter to Disney’s side. Acquired Fox for $71 billion in 2019 And how the company has eroded shareholder value in recent years.
“Fox hurt this company. Fox took the dividend. Fox turned what was once a pristine balance sheet into a mess,” Peltz said Thursday.
On Thursday, the activist firm filed a preliminary proxy statement seeking to put Peltz on Disney’s board of directors.
take the lead what’s the trouble Trian in conflict with proxy wars, Disney announced on Wednesday Mark Parker, executive chairman of Nike, will become the new Chairman of the Board of Directors. Disney’s board of directors currently consists of 11 members.
The activist firm said it owned about 9.4 million shares, worth about $900 million, and it first accumulated a few months ago. Mr. Tryon said Wednesday that he believes Disney “has lost its way and has suffered a rapid decline in performance.”
Peltz also said he wants to be on the board so he can access internal phone numbers and let other members know if he’s missing an opportunity.
“We don’t need to overwhelm them,” Peltz told CNBC. “We don’t need multiple people on the board.”
Disney shares rose about 2% on Thursday.
Trian pointed out what is seen as poor corporate governance on Disney’s part, including a failed succession plan, “too much” compensation practices and Disney’s lack of engagement with Trian in recent months.
In a public filing Thursday, Trian listed a number of meetings with Disney and its board members, beginning with then-CEO Bob Chapek, Peltz and his wife having lunch in July. Meetings and correspondence between Trian and Disney increased in frequency in November, according to the documents.
Peltz said he had only met with Disney’s board of directors for about 45 minutes on Thursday and hadn’t heard back from them. A Disney representative did not immediately respond to comments.
Peltz also said Disney was open to having him as an observer on the board, allowing him to sit in on meetings and give advice on operations, but without voting rights.
“You don’t have to overwhelm them. I just need to speak rationally to these people and explain where they failed and what opportunities they missed,” Peltz said Thursday. , referring to other companies he has served on boards of
In November, Bob Iger did something amazing. Back at the helm of Disney, Eiger ousted Chapek, whom he had chosen as his successor, for poor earnings reporting. Trian doesn’t want to replace Iger, but wants to work with him. Ensuring a Successful CEO Change Within the next two years.
Disney announced Wednesday that Parker will take over as chairman from Susan Arnold and will be tasked with leading the succession plan.
In Thursday’s filing, Trian also addressed Disney’s streaming strategy, stating that it “has reached revenues on par with Netflix and has a significant IP advantage, but is struggling with profitability.” . The company also criticized Disney for lacking cost discipline and believing it was making too much profit in its theme park business to make up for streaming losses.
Disney’s stock price has been rough in 2022, starting early in the pandemic when theme parks and movie theaters closed. But as streaming subscriber growth slowed and investors questioned profitability, cord disconnects surged. Most media stocks fell last year.
Peltz said on Thursday that Disney would have to get out of the streaming business or buy Hulu. “They have to buy Hulu, which unfortunately means the company will be in debt for years to come,” Peltz said.
Last year, Disney also announced that it would proceed with cost-cutting measuresincluding a hiring freeze favored by Iger.
Disclosure: Comcast is the parent company of NBCUniversal, which owns CNBC.