Private investor Nelson Peltz
gave Legg Mason's
shares a boost in price Wednesday. The asset manager's stock price jumped 11 percent after the Daily Telegraph reported
that Trian had purchased about nine percent of the company. Trian is controlled by Peltz and had disclosed a 0.51 percent stake in March.
Peltz's plan, according to an unnamed source quoted by the London paper, is to raise his stake to 20 percent to "persuade the management to give him a couple of board seats so he can create value for shareholders." Peltz is known as a deep value investor. In 2007 he purchased a stake in Cadbury Schweppes and eventually forced the spin-off of a division of that company.
The story added that Trian now owns 12 to 13 million shares in Legg Mason, which managed $632 billion of assets as of the end of March.
The Baltimore-based Legg Mason was founded in 1899 and is one of the 10 largest mutual fund complexes distributed by brokers. Its primary brands include the Legg Mason Funds and fixed income specialist Western Asset Management.
Sean Hanna, Editor in Chief
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