Newly Appointed Disney Chairman Is Little More Than A Rubber Stamp, Says Activist Investor Nelson Peltz

  • Trian Partners founder and CEO Nelson Peltz said that the Walt Disney Co's DIS board change would shift the company's direction, saying the new chairman is little more than a rubber stamp for newly returned CEO Bob Iger.
  • On Thursday, Mr. Peltz and his hedge fund Trian Fund Management turned up the heat in their proxy battle to counter his push. 
  • Related: Nelson Peltz, Jim Cramer Agree Disney Has 'Balance Sheet From Hell': Why The Activist Investor Says The Mouse Is Telling Lies.
  • Disney on Wednesday replaced its board chair Susan Arnold with Nike Inc NKE executive chairman Mark Parker, and the size of the board will be reduced to 11 members.
  • Peltz thinks Mr. Parker and the newly-returned Mr. Iger are too friendly for Mr. Parker to be truly objective, Wall Street Journal reported
  • Also, Parker has too many demands on his time and attention, given that he still serves as Nike's executive chairman.
  • Disney might fail to convince Mr. Peltz that the company is on the right track, meaning Mr. Iger will face a challenging path as Disney struggles with a potential recession, a prolonged stock price slump, rising costs for content, potential layoffs, and stiff competition. 
  • "There are still several current directors and members of management who oversaw and approved some of Disney's worst corporate governance and strategic failures," Trian wrote. 
  • Price Action: DIS shares are down 0.81% at $99 during the premarket session on the last check Friday.
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