Activist Insight is keeping a running tab on new positions as the deadline for disclosing portfolios for the quarter ended June 30 nears. Alerts may be sent out throughout the day.
Marcato Capital Management decreased its stake in Craft Brew Alliance, after another shareholder pushed for the sale of the company, as well as its stake in Diversified Restaurant. The activist also cut its stake in Rayonier Advanced Materials by almost half, a year after suggesting the company focus on buybacks and reduced its position in Terex, a year and a half after praising the success of the firm’s CEO.
It was a busy quarter for Elliott Management, during which the activist sold off its stakes in Sempra Energy, Ryanair, Pacific Gas & Electric, EQT, and Bristol-Myers Squibb. The investor also decreased its positions in Hess during a share repurchase programme of $1 billion, Altaba during the approval of a liquidation and dissolution plan, and Roadrunner Transportation Systems after exercising its right to take on a large amount of stock in February. While Tesla still faced shareholder discontent, Elliott took a 1.3% stake in the automaker and increased its stakes in Nielsen Holdings, Dell Technologies, and Apple.
Praesidium Capital Management increased its stake in Instructure to 7.5%, up from 6.3%, praising management for its exploration of strategies to maximize shareholder value.
Keith Meister’s Corvex Management disclosed stakes in Anadarko Petroleum, which recently was acquired by Occidental Petroleum amid investor backlash, computer software firm Alteryx, cybersecurity firm Forescout Technologies, oil refiner Marathon Petroleum and packaging solutions provider Ranpack, among others. It also sold out of Zendesk and Zayo.
Before Viex Capital nominated Eric Singer to A10’s board, the activist increased its stake in the company while also increasing its stake in Emcore, three years after agreeing to not acquire any more stock. Viex also upped its holdings in Immersion while running a campaign against all of the company’s nominees for independent directors, and Vitamin Shoppe before the company announced it had entered into a definitive agreement to be acquired by Liberty Tax. The activist decreased its holding in Arlo Technologies while entering into a cooperation agreement in which the company agreed to appoint a Viex-recommended independent director and commence a strategic review process.
While Voce Capital Management withdrew its nominees from election at Argo Group International’s meeting, the activist also slightly decreased its stake in the company. At Cutera, however, Voce increased its stake months after CEO James Reinstein resigned amid criticism from the activist. The investor also slightly increased its holding in Natus Medical, a year after its nominees were voted onto the board.
Land and Buildings rebuilt its stake in Mack Cali Realty, disclosing it acquired 678,000 shares. Land and Buildings had pushed Mack Cali to sell itself in 2018, while the company also clashed with Bow Street, which gained board seats in a proxy contest earlier this year. Elsewhere, the activist raised its stake in Brookdale Senior Living, amid a campaign to split the company into two.
Jeffrey Ubben’s ValueAct Capital Partners was quite busy this quarter, selling out of one stake and revealing four new investments. ValueAct sold its stake in PG&E, after it supported a campaign by BlueMountain Capital Management to gain board seats at the California utility with Ubben was on the dissident slate.
In its buying activity, ValueAct disclosed a small stake in Booking Holdings, the operator of online travel websites such as Booking.com, Priceline.com, and Agoda.com. It also revealed small investments in California public utility Edison International, technology-focused defense company Parson Corp, and transportation services provider XPO Logistics, which was identified as a potential activists target by Activist Insight Vulnerability last January.
Sachem Head Capital Management revealed a more focused equity portfolio this quarter, selling stakes in Allergan, which agreed to merge with Pfizer’s generic business, Wellcare Health, Centene, Berry Global, and Zayo Group, which was acquired by Digital Colony and EQT in May. The activist slightly raised its stake in PG&E, which is undergoing a restructuring process, and Eagle Materials, and revealed a stake in Salesforce.
Nelson Peltz’s Trian Partners revealed a new stake in Legg Mason, where he and fellow co-founder Ed Garden joined the board in May. The activist also sold some shares in General Electric, as the stock recovered strongly this year, and PPG Industries and Bank of New York Mellon.
Starboard Value has sold around 50% of its stake in Natus Medical, without launching a campaign, and sold out of Zayo. It also decreased its stake in eBay by more than two million shares to four million. Starboard settled with eBay in March, as part of an agreement that handed it and Elliott Management board seats. Starboard’s only new stake this quarter is Aecom, where it called for the sale of the company’s construction unit in June.
Pershing Square Capital Management has built a stake in Berkshire Hathaway. Pershing Square’s Bill Ackman, an admirer of Berkshire’s Warren Buffett, is unlikely to be critical of someone who he has credited with the turnaround in his investment performance.
Cevian Capital increased its stake in Veoneer by about half as the Swedish automotive technology struggled after being spun off by Autoliv. The activist has maintained its stake in the latter.
A return to Medifast’s register was short-lived for Engaged Capital, which sold its stake after one quarter. The activist also exited Aratana Therapeutics, which was sold in April. Glenn Welling’s fund has no new positions but added to its stake in Hain Celestial Group, which was three times the size of its next largest position at the end of June.
Snow Park Capital added Spirit MTA REIT to its portfolio in the second quarter, as the real estate investment trust sold its properties for $2.4 billion. The company has since been paying special dividends to keep its cash to a minimum. It sold Hilton Grand Vacations, Home Depot, KB Home, Uniti Group, and Digital Realty, adding Babcock & Wilcox, Camping World Holdings, New Home Co., and Columbia Property Trust in their place.
Barry Rosenstein’s Jana Partners has built stakes in Callaway Golf and Axalta Coating Systems, both of which Activist Insight Online previously reported. News circulated in July that Axalta has attracted a host of bidders interested in a takeover, including PPG Industries and Kansai Paint. The now dedicated activist should have some cash on hand thanks to the sale of its stock in jeweler Tiffany & Co.
FrontFour Capital disclosed investments in clothing retailer Abercrombie & Fitch and timeshare operator Hilton Grand Vacations. The activist also exited its holdings in CenturyLink, Louisiana Pacific, Sensient Technologies, and Caesars Entertainment, which confirmed a merger with Eldorado Resorts after settling with Carl Icahn for three board seats.
SpringOwl Asset Management sold its stakes in Boeing, Qualcomm, and Nielsen Holdings. Meanwhile, the activist acquired holdings in Symantec and Gray Television.
Hong Kong-based Oasis Management built positions in online luxury fashion retailer Farfetch, Korean telecom firm KT, and Nascar owner International Speedway. The activist also exited its investment in winter clothing manufacturer Canada Goose.
Marathon Partners Equity Management exited its investments in KAR Auction Services and eBay, which earlier this year agreed to launch a strategic review and add new directors to its board after settling with Elliott Management and Starboard Value.