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Shareholder Activism’s Rebound to Confront Game-Changing Rules

  • Activist newcomers play greater role in year’s 220 campaigns
  • New rules set to alter proxy fights, perhaps boost disclosures

Shareholder activism rebounded in 2021 but activists and defense advisers alike are bracing for regulatory changes that are likely to change how they do business for years to come. 

There were 220 campaigns launched against target companies with a market value of more than $1 billion by activist investors this year through Dec. 28, according to data compiled by Bloomberg. That was up about 20% from the 183 campaigns launched in 2020 but still below the 238 launched in 2019 prior to the coronavirus pandemic.