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Disney board battle gets rough

March 12, 2024

Disney has fired back at Nelson Peltz and his Trian Fund’s campaign to win two board seats with an attack on the activist’s motivations and qualifications. In a 66-page regulatory filing, Disney said Peltz and Trian’s other designated board candidate, former Disney CFO Jay Rasulo, “are not what Disney needs right now.”

Disney says Peltz lacks understanding of the challenges the company is facing, and that his suggestions for improvement “are nothing new.” Neither Peltz nor Rasulo have the skills to help Disney, the company asserts, reports Reuters.

Trian responded: “Disney’s investor presentation is long on aesthetics and excuses, full of barbs unbecoming of a company like Disney and devoid of even a claim that the incumbent board has generated strong returns for shareholders.”

Trian argues the current board fails to provide effective oversight and made its own case in a 133-page-long presentation last week.

Disney claims Peltz has a long history of “attacking companies to the ultimate detriment” of shareholders. His quest to win a Disney board seat, “seems more about vanity than a belief in Disney.”

Disney’s updated proxy filing criticises Trian’s performance when it was a Disney pension fund manager and declaims Rasulo as a disgruntled former employee (he was passed over for promotion by CEO Bob Iger ten years ago.)

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