2023 did not end on the best note for The Walt Disney Company, and 2024 is not set to ease up anytime soon. The House of Mouse is currently fighting against an attempted hostile takeover by billionaire investor Nelson Peltz. Peltz has been outspoken in his dislike of Bob Iger and the way he is running the company. At the beginning of last year, Peltz tried to fight for one board seat, but now he is fighting for two — one for him and one for a loyalist.
On January 3, Disney announced that they had entered into an agreement with ValueAct, another activist investment company. The company said that it would fight alongside Disney, approve all of its shareholder nominations, and vote against Peltz and his loyalists.
And now, Bob Iger has another big name on his side.
In an exclusive report, Reuters has said that Blackwells Capital is going to fight fire with fire. Insiders told Reuters that Blackwells will nominate three directors for seats on Disney’s Board. If Peltz and his loyalists manage to get voted onto the board, and Blackwells’ nominees also make it onto the board, Blackwells’ people would outnumber Peltz’s.
This is not the first time that Blackwells has been vocal in its support of Iger. When Peltz first announced that he was once again fighting for a seat at Disney’s table, Blackwells was very outspoken against it. The company claimed that Peltz was driven by “ego” and “mindless, drum-beating activism.” The company also said that Peltz could end up costing shareholders $50 million.
Nelson Peltz and his Trian Group have approximately $3 million in Disney shares — many of which are owned by bitter ex-Marvel executive Ike Perlmutter. And while that is a lot, Blackwells has a whopping $5 million in Disney shares.
Blackwells’ support is huge for Iger, who has been struggling since returning as CEO in November 2022. Iger has been dealing with box office flops, a struggling Disney+, and park guests who seem to complain more than ever these days. However, he has managed to keep shareholders somewhat at bay, mainly by reintroducing dividends and saving the company more than $5.5 billion last year.
Are you happy to see investors standing by Bob Iger? Let us know in the comments!