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Second activist investor buys into Elanco

Elanco Animal Health CEO Jeff Simmons speaks during an interview at the New York Stock Exchange (NYSE) on Sept. 20, 2018. (Photo: Reuters/Brendan McDermid)

Reuters — Hedge fund Starboard Value LP has taken a stake in Elanco Animal Health and nominated three directors to the animal healthcare company’s board, the Wall Street Journal reported Wednesday, citing people familiar with the matter.

The WSJ report did not mention the size of Starboard’s stake in Elanco, which makes treatments for pets and livestock and has a market value of about $15.27 billion, as per Refinitiv data (all figures US$).

Elanco did not immediately respond to a Reuters request for comment.

Starboard is the second activist investor to show interest in Elanco recently, after Sachem Head Capital Management LP last year made a roughly $1.2 billion bet on the company and added its head Scott Ferguson to Elanco’s board.

Elanco was a division of Eli Lilly and Co. until 2018, when the drugmaker spun it out in an initial public offering. Less than a year later, Elanco struck a deal to buy Bayer’s animal health business for over $7 billion.

— Reporting for Reuters by Mrinalika Roy in Bangalore.

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