Will Peltz Duke It Out With This Fund Firm, Again?
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Wednesday, May 15, 2019

Will Peltz Duke It Out With This Fund Firm, Again?

Nelson Peltz and his team may getting ready for a rematch with the management of a certain publicly traded asset manager.

Joseph A. Sullivan
Legg Mason Global Asset Management
Chairman & CEO
Peltz's Trian Fund Management may soon push changes at Legg Mason [profile], the Wall Street Journal and Reuters report. Unnamed sources say that Trian might push for more cost cuts at the Baltimore-based fund firm, whose share price has fallen 15.5 percent year-over-year. Word is that Trian is already in discussions with Legg management.

Craig Siegenthaler, a Legg-watching analyst at Credit Suisse, views the Trian-Legg as a positive sign for Legg.

"It raises our confidence behind LM's $100M+ 2Y expense cut target," Siegenthaler writes.

Peltz and Legg Mason, now led by CEO Joe Sullivan, have been connected for a decade. In 2009, Trian bought about nine percent of the company and Peltz joined Legg's board. He continued upping Trian's Legg stake to become its biggest shareholder, successfully pushed for a share buyback, and stayed invested as crisis-era Legg CEO Mark Fetting departed and Sullivan stepped up, first on an interim basis and then on a permanent one. Peltz left the Legg board in 2014, and in 2016 Trian mostly exited its Legg position.

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