Morning Brief: Elliott Pushes for a Deal at Travelport Worldwide

The hedge fund firm announced it has taken a 6.4 percent stake in the travel technology company, sending its shares surging.


Paul Singer’s Elliott Management identified a new activist target. The multistrategy firm said it owns 6.4 percent of the common shares and has economic exposure of 11.8 percent of Travelport Worldwide, a travel-oriented technology firm. In a regulatory filing, Elliott said the company’s shares “represent an attractive investment opportunity” and that it will seek some sort of dialogue with the board of directors and management about ways to maximize shareholder value.

Elliott said it will encourage Travelport to consider a sale of the company or assets and that the hedge fund “will seek to participate as a purchaser or investor.” In the filing, Eliott said Travelport “is well positioned in the GDS (global distribution system) industry, especially in high growth travel markets,” and that it possesses a “fast growing and strategic business” in the travel payments industry. Shares of Travelport surged more than 17 percent on the news, to close at $16.80. After the sharp move, the stock barely has a $2 billion market capitalization.


Tenet Healthcare Corporation and Glenview Capital Management announced a settlement over the company’s corporate governance practices. Under the deal, Glenview, which owns 17.74 percent of the hospital management company, agreed to withdraw its proposal to amend the company’s bylaws that would allow shareholders to take action by written consent without a meeting. Glenview also agreed to vote its shares in favor of all of the board’s director nominees and support all board-recommended proposals at the company’s 2018 annual meeting.

For its part, Tenet is revising its special meeting bylaw so that it can only be amended by a vote from shareholders representing a majority of the shares. It also agreed to hold its annual meeting at least every 13 months as required by Delaware law. Tenet is also adding a shareholder rights plan.

In a press release, Ronald Rittenmeyer, executive chairman and CEO, said, “We are pleased to have reached this constructive agreement with Glenview, which demonstrates our ongoing commitment to listening to our shareholders and incorporating their feedback as part of our efforts to strengthen our corporate governance practices.” Glenview’s Robbins said: “As a long-term shareholder of Tenet and as its largest investor, we firmly believe in the company’s value creation opportunities and we appreciate steps taken in recent months to enhance Tenet’s focus on patient satisfaction, operating efficiency, incentive alignment and corporate governance.”


Brigade Capital Management bought about 115,000 shares of Kindred Healthcare for $9.25 apiece, boosting its stake to 7.54 percent of the operator of hospitals, nursing homes and other healthcare facilities.


Hedge fund favorite Uber has agreed to sell its southeast Asia operations to Grab. “Grab will integrate Uber’s ridesharing and food delivery business in the region into Grab’s existing multi-modal transportation and fintech platform,” stated a press release. Grab will take over Uber’s operations and assets in Cambodia, Indonesia, Malaysia, Myanmar, the Philippines, Singapore, Thailand, and Vietnam. Under the deal, Uber, a privately-held unicorn, will take a 27.5 percent stake in Grab, and Uber CEO Dara Khosrowshahi will join Grab’s board. The deal is not surprising. During a recent visit to Vietnam, Grab helmets on motorbike riders were ubiquitous, while one was hard-pressed to see an Uber driver or passenger.