Securities Litigation partner Michael Lohnes partnered with Marsh FINPRO Directors and Officers Liability Product leader Sarah Downey to publish a report on the impact of new shareholder activist demands for corporations and their directors.

The report states that the number of campaigns against US-listed companies fell slightly in the first half of 2019; however, shareholder activism remains a significant issue for companies and their directors and officers. And while activity in the US has slowed, campaigns are increasing outside of the US, signaling a rise in shareholder influence internationally. With the success of these campaigns, the balance of power between shareholders and boards of directors continues to shift. As a result, companies should be aware of the new demands shareholders are making of boards, management and directors across all industries.

The report goes on to address the following:

  • The increase in activist campaigns driven by mergers and acquisitions.
  • The focus of these campaigns on promoting diversity and changing corporate policies regarding minority representation and gender equality.
  • The increased concentration of campaigns on environmental issues and sustainability.
  • Long slate nominations and the decline of director support.
  • Recent campaigns geared toward appointing employee representatives to corporate boards.
  • Responding to and defending against campaigns through D&O insurance.

New "Shareholder Activist Demands Create Fresh Challenges for Directors" in its entirety.