Elliot Advisors has gone to court to force the resignation of the Dutch paint maker’s chairman Antony Burgmans and push through a takeover.
Editor’s Remarks: Elliot Advisors are famously aggressive, and the Dutch owner of the Dulux paint brand is in their sights. US paint rival PPG launched a $27bn takeover approach for Akzo Nobel in April but the bid was rebuffed, and Elliott Advisors blame the chairman for the deal’s collapse. Elliot tried to force an extraordinary general meeting, rejected by management, to get rid of Burgmans in April and they have now applied to the Dutch courts. They have also announced an increase of their stake in Akzo from 3% in April to 9.5% now, so they look to be digging in for a big fight saying that shareholders had “irretrievably lost confidence” in Burgmans. A PPG takeover of Akzo would create the world’s largest paint company, valued at around $130bn, and Elliott sees enough value in it to have a court battle.