April 14, 2024

Jamie Dimon

JPMorgan Chase CEO Jamie Dimon told CNBC that “Putting people on a Board unnecessarily can harm a company.”
Image: Marco Bellos (Reuters)

JPMorgan Chase CEO Jamie Dimon has endorsed Disney CEO Bob Iger in his ongoing fight with activist investor Nelson Peltz. Dimon’s backing comes less than a month away from the media conglomerate’s annual meeting on April 3, where shareholders will cast votes for company’s board of directors.

“Bob is a first-class executive and outstanding leader who I’ve known for decades. He knows the media and entertainment business cold and has the successful track record to prove it,” Dimon told CNBC’s David Farber on Wednesday (Mar. 13).

He continued, “Putting people on a board unnecessarily can harm a company. I don’t know why shareholders would take that risk, especially given the significant progress the company has made since Bob came back.”

Peltz, co-founder of the asset management firm Trian Partners, is seeking to nominate himself and former Disney CFO Jay Rasulo to the company’s board. Trian Partners released a 133-page white paper this month outlining Peltz’s plans for the company, which include a restructuring of leadership, aligning performance-based compensation with shareholder value, and developing a strategy to reach margins similar to Netflix’s 15% to 20% by 2027.

“Nelson Peltz has a long history of attacking companies to the ultimate detriment of shareholder value,” Disney responded in a video this week.

Peltz, who owns about $3 billion of Disney stock, previously tried and failed to get a seat on Disney’s board in 2023.

Dimon joins Disney grandchildren in backing Iger

Nine grandchildren of the media company’s co-founder, Walt and Roy Disney, recently came out against Peltz’s plans.

“They are not interested in preserving the Disney magic, but stripping it to the bone to make a quick profit for themselves,” Roy P. Disney told the New York Times in late February.

In 1 of 2 letters to Disney shareholders, the Disney heirs wrote,“Bob Iger has grown this company in a modern world, and he continues to maintain a balance of creativity and profit.”

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