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Activism Daily: Compensation in focus

Activist fans - somewhat of a light Monday. Still playing catch up from last week. News and stories for June 15 below - as usual the free newsletter is on a 24-hour delay; Activist Strategy subscribers get it on publication day - but you can get on that 2-week free trial here. As usual, tip us off at @activiststocks and get on the free daily newsletter sign up.

News-

  • Audley Capital has gone activist on Circle Oil, the Irish oil exploration company. It owns 6% of the company.  

  • Farallon Capital is activist at Perfect World with an 8.6% stake.

  • Marathon Partners got the win at Shutterfly, getting two members on the board and having investors vote against executive pay [link]

  • Jana Partners has a new stake in United Rentals, only it’s not new [link]

  • Ancient Art takes its Xoom stake to below 5%. Ancient went active in November of 2014.

  • Wynnefield Partners sells off some of its activist target Ari Network Services, still owning 5.6% of the company.

Stories-

  • @lizrhoffman at WSJ puts a piece on how executive pay is becoming the focus for activist investors. Shutterfly gets some focus, as does Jana Partners’ target Qualcomm. Of note, “One factor teeing up the issue for activists is the complexity of compensation, experts say. I’ve seen bonus plans that would take a Ph.D. in physics to figure out” [link]

What we’ve been working on-

  • Weekend Feature includes looking at why passive investors don’t give a shit about activists or relative performance [partial paywall]

  • Checking in on activism in commodities, featuring Cliffs Natural [link]