Activist ValueAct Discloses 1.1% Holding in American Express

ValueAct Capital Management, the activist fund run by Jeff Ubben, disclosed a new 1.1 percent stake in American Express Co.

ValueAct acquired about 11.1 million shares in the credit-card issuer as of June 30, according to a filing Monday with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission by the San Francisco-based firm. Bloomberg reported Aug. 7 that ValueAct had acquired a stake of about $1 billion.

ValueAct, which manages about $18 billion, recently disclosed a 5.4 percent stake in Rolls-Royce Holdings Plc as a new core activist holding. The London-based airplane-engine maker confirmed talks and said ValueAct had become its biggest investor, weeks after Rolls-Royce hired a new chief executive officer. The activist also bought a stake in British engineering company Smiths Group Plc, people with knowledge of the matter said at the time.

The fund manager typically favors companies with recurring revenues that it views as temporarily mispriced, and prefers working with managers and directors behind the scenes. ValueAct has influenced the direction of public companies as diverse as Microsoft Corp., Gardner Denver Inc., Valeant Pharmaceuticals International Inc., Reuters Group Plc, Adobe Systems Inc. and Sara Lee Corp.

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