The Trian Fund Management and Sandell Asset Management Group, led by billionaire investor Nelson Peltz, yesterday (23 May) submitted a proposal to enhance shareholder value at the company to the US Securities and Exchange Commission.
The Trian Group, vociferous activist investors, have been pressuring Heinz to increase returns to shareholders. In April, the group submitted five nominations for appointments to the company’s board of directors to be decided at the upcoming annual meeting, scheduled to be held on 16 August.
In connection to this proposal, Trian issued a position paper called “Results Speak Louder Than Words: A Plan to Enhance Value at Heinz”, detailing the action that the group wants to see Heinz management taking.
Peltz’s suggestions include cutting costs, selling assets and increasing its marketing on core brands like ketchup. Peltz is also pressing the company to increase share buybacks and make higher long-term dividends.
“The company’s board should establish a strategic vision that puts an end to the frantic activity of divestitures, acquisitions and restructurings that have been so damaging over the last eight years,” the Trian Group said in the filing.
The Trian Group is the owner of approximately 5.4% of the outstanding shares of Heinz.
The Trian Group’s five nominees for the Heinz Board of Directors are: Nelson Peltz, Peter W May, Edward P Garden, Greg Norman and Michael F Weinstein.