Business & Investment

The appearance of Elliott Boss when meeting GSK Chief Emma Walmsley

One of the world’s most feared hedge fund bosses is putting more pressure on GlaxoSmithKline CEO Emma Walmsley with a surprise appearance at the Crunch Investors Conference.

In a dramatic intervention, Gordon Singer, head of Elliott Investment Management’s London office, questioned Walmsley’s leadership in front of GSK’s chairman and his 50 top investors at a private virtual event. I presented it.

Singer, the son of Elliott’s boss Paul Singer and considered the heir to his father’s empire, also held back the stock prices of pharmaceutical companies below pre-pandemic levels after hitting summer highs. I demanded to know if it was.

GSK Chairman Sir Jonathan Simmons and Senior Independent Director Vindy Banga have convened a meeting to reassure investors about the progress of plans to split the group.

Gordon Singer is the heir to the Elliott Empire, and Emma Walmsley is under pressure at GSK

However, sources familiar with Elliott’s tactics said the unexpected appearance of one of the oldest and feared bosses of activist investors was a deliberate move to send a message to GSK Top Brass. Said that.

“He wants them to know he’s there,” sources said.

“He doesn’t do anything by chance. Their activist business is a bit more theatrical by definition because what they’re trying to do is move stock prices.

“I think that’s the fundamental reason he’s there. [intervened like this] Put pressure on the CEO who disagrees with him. ”

Gordon Singer, who spent a year at Exeter College in Oxford, is considered analytical and unobtrusive compared to his combative father.

Arsenal fan, 47, left the bank in 1999 to join his father’s company after training as an analyst at Lehman Brothers. He led the expansion in Europe after taking charge of the London office in 2009.

Elliott is known for his aggressive tactics of forcing corporate shake-ups. Earlier this year, it acquired billions of pounds of stake in GSK and demanded a sale in July rather than a spin-off of its consumer business.

He also pressured Walmsley by demanding the process of choosing the next boss of the “new GSK”, the remaining biopharmacy sector after the spin-off. GSK’s board of directors states she will remain CEO.

Last month, a small hedge fund, Bluebell Capital, went public for the same purpose, claiming it wasn’t working in concert with Elliott.

An investor on the phone last week said: Elliott wants a process to prove that Emma is working.

Simmons is understood to have repeatedly supported Walmsley, who had not called himself, and Banga is trying to keep Elliott away, saying “management has a few more rounds left.” Stated.

Walmsley’s lack of scientific experience has been repeatedly questioned as she prepares to lead the new GSK.

Another investor in Cole said:’It was a shame. Vindy believes consumer spin-outs and drug pipelines are catalysts for rising stock prices-we’re not sure.

“Gordon is polite, gentleman and professional.”

Elliott’s stock emerged in April, causing the first surge in stock prices. Investors are concerned about the strength of GSK’s pharmaceutical pipeline, and the patent for dolutegravir, a major HIV drug, is expected to expire by the end of the decade.

Elliott has assets worth more than $ 40 billion and seeks more scientific experience on GSK's board of directors

Elliott has assets worth more than $ 40 billion and seeks more scientific experience on GSK’s board of directors

With over $ 40 billion (£ 30 billion) in assets, Elliott seeks better scientific experience on the GSK board.

A £ 70bn pharmaceutical giant is working to invite directors with a scientific background.

Symonds is understood to have expressed dissatisfaction with the call for difficulty in finding the right executives without conflict of interest.

One large fund manager investing in GSK said: There are many pharmaceutical companies that are not run by scientists. In reality, the CEO is the overlord for strategy and business growth.

A GSK spokesman declined to comment on Elliott’s intervention, saying:

Paul Singer has made Elliott one of the most feared hedge funds in the world after running a successful campaign against corporate giants, including Premier Inn and Beefeater hospitality chain owner Whitbread. bottom.

Bluebell shook his head earlier this year when he claimed the scalp of Danone’s chief Emmanuel Faber.

Analysts expect GSK’s third-quarter results scheduled for later this month to show how the protracted impact of Covid in the United States is reducing sales of the Shingrix herpes zoster vaccine, which remains significant. I am.

Walmsley was criticized for missing a boat in bringing the Covid vaccine to market. However, the partnership between Covid treatment and rival vaccine makers is expected to generate pandemic-related revenue.

GSK’s pharmaceutical pipeline rose when David Julius and Ardem Patapoutian won the Nobel Prize in Medicine last week.

American scientists have been recognized for their discovery of how the body perceives temperature and tactile sensation. This can lead to new ways of treating pain and illness.

GSK is conducting early-stage trials of the oral TRPV4 drug aimed at helping millions of people around the world suffering from blindness associated with diabetic complications.

The drug was born out of a science pioneered by Dr. Julius, who later advised GSK scientists. This is the fourth consecutive year that a major pharmaceutical company has had a relationship with a Nobel laureate.

GSK Principal Investigator John Repore told an email on Sunday: “We are developing innovative medicines for patients according to the world’s most innovative science.”

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The appearance of Elliott Boss when meeting GSK Chief Emma Walmsley The appearance of Elliott Boss when meeting GSK Chief Emma Walmsley

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