09 Sep 2019 Elliott Management calls for AT&T shake-up as Trump piles on
Activist fund Elliott Management Corp acquired a $3.2 billion stake in AT&T Inc, making AT&T one of the three largest companies after Apple and Microsoft to be targeted by activist shareholders.
AT&T acquired Time Warner in 2018, gaining control of HBO and CNN, and DirecTV in 2015 among the others, and appears as a conglomerate with strong differences between societies. themselves. The company has been heavily scrutinized by antitrust authorities, in particular after the 2018 acquisition which was followed by the departure of numerous prominent and talented figures of the acquired companies. Moreover, the company is still underperforming and racking up debt: this is why activist fund Elliott has set up a plan that includes divesting certain businesses, cutting costs, reviewing capital allocation and stopping acquisitions; also, the board might be enlarged as concerns on overlapping roles have been raised.
The company clearly has had problems at strategical and corporate governance levels. The entrance of Elliott might represent a turning point and was well received by shareholders and the press; even President Trump, who has always criticized CNN and its parent company AT&T, declared himself pleased.
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