In the U.K., the recent growth of shareholder activism has been driven by U.S. insurgent fund managers, but there is no shortage of homegrown activist funds. The traditional tactics of U.S.-based investors might not always be the right approach for the market, but activist managers have learned to adapt. Pension funds, family offices, private equity funds and large asset-managers are all becoming more influential in the boardrooms of public companies, and even large, well performing companies are not safe from a shareholder attack.

Senior management and boards need to be aware of and understand how to proactively position themselves and prepare for engaged shareholders. Is the company up to speed on the latest ESG initiatives? What happens if an activist tries to block a merger or acquisition from closing?

Join senior journalists from The Deal, the leading U.S. news source on activism, mergers, acquisitions and all other changes in corporate control, for an exclusive conference which will examine the current state of shareholder activism, outline best practices and provide vital guidance around the new age of activism in Europe.

For more information about Corporate Governance Europe, view the agenda and speaker roster from our 2019 Conference.

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London, United Kingdom

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AGENDA TOPICS

Active is the New Activist: Why Active Managers are Becoming Insurgents
U.K. active managers are issuing public press releases criticizing deal terms, raising issues with corporate operations and even launching cross-border proxy fights. In other situations, active managers are collaborating and forming groups through the U.K. Investor Forum to target specific companies on operational, listing and M&A-related issues. In other cases, publicly vocal active managers are able to convince traditional insurgent hedge funds, to join their efforts. As more capital shifts from active to passive funds, active managers are taking concerns with their investments public in an effort to differentiate themselves and show they are working for their investors.

The New ESG Push
Investors are mobilizing across borders on large global issues such as burning rainforests in Brazil’s Amazon or efforts to have target companies sever ties with industry lobby groups. This panel will take a closer look at ESG-focused investing and whether investor groups in the U.K. and Europe are achieving their goals through mobilization.

Long Term Capital Helps Activists Stick Around
Many U.K. and European activists have their investors' capital locked up for extensive periods. Others set up Special Purpose Vehicles with large investment allocations in specific target companies. Finally, some activists list multi-investment funds on the London Stock Exchange or other exchanges in an attempt to develop a sort of permanent capital for their insurgencies. This panel will examine why activist investors set up these structures, how other investors react to them and what to expect in activism investment vehicle structures in the coming months.

Activists Push to Drive and Block M&A
In 2019, U.S. activists continued to push for European deals and take-privates while other insurgents tried to scuttle mergers, occasionally opposing other insurgents on mergers. Finally, bumpitrage continues to be big in Europe, with activists pushing for improved transaction terms. This panel will examine what to expect next.

Activism: Behind-the-Scenes
So much activism occurs in private conversations behind-the-scenes and never makes it into the public domain. This panel will look at private engagement between companies and activists in the U.K. and Europe and whether insurgents can effect change without public agitation.

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To learn how your organization can participate in this conference, contact Jenney Smith at jenney.smith@thedeal.com or +1 212-224-3026.

CONTACT

Sponsorship:

Jenney Smith

P: 212-224-3026

Registration/Press:

Nicole Harris

P: 212-224-3040

Speakers:

Eric Salvarezza

P: 631-664-1311

What’s Next for Activists and Brexit
The European Union may extend Brexit talks into next summer, as British and European policymakers continue to spar. As the debate continues, the fallout from Brexit and the possibility of a no deal departure could expose some U.K. companies to activist hedge fund attacks in the months and years to come. This panel will examine how market uncertainty around Brexit could result in a major buying opportunity for U.S. activist funds in the U.K., with M&A driven insurgencies to follow.

SPEAKERS

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Anne-Sophie D'Andlau
CIAM

Dr. Giulia Nobili
Sterling Strategic Value Fund

Jeffrey Pierce
Snow Park Capital Partners

Rishi Varma
Hewlett Packard Enterprise

Speakers

Till Hufnagel
Petrus Advisers Ltd.

Gianluca Ferrari
Shareholder Value Management AG

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The Corporate Governance conference attracts senior executives, board members and investors from a variety of sectors.