Starboard has identified its latest activist target. The
activist hedge fund firm said in a regulatory filing it owns
5.7 percent of Parexel International Corporation, a life
sciences consulting firm that conducts clinical trials on
behalf of pharmaceutical clients.
In a regulatory filing,
Starboard said that when it bought the stock the shares
were "substantially undervalued" and that there is a
"substantial opportunity to improve" operating margins given
the company’s "large disparity" with its "best-in
class peers." It also pointed to recent press reports that the
company may be working with investment bankers about a possible
sale. Starboard said if Parexel "runs a legitimate, robust
process to explore strategic alternatives," there would be
"significant strategic and financial buyer interest."
It also said it retained D. Jamie Macdonald as a consultant,
noting he has significant experience as an industry executive,
including as CEO of INC Research and senior vice president and
head of global project management of Quintiles Transnational
Holdings, "where he helped to significantly improve operating
margins." Interestingly, the stock rose less than 1 percent on
Thursday, to close at $75.24.
UBS cut its price target on
Snap from $24 to $19 after the social media company
reported disappointing results for the first quarter since it
went public earlier this year. "Over the short/medium term, we
see the key three debates – user growth/engagement, ad
monetization and valuation – as unresolved as a result
of this first earnings report," it states in a note to clients.
Shares of Snap plunged more than 21 percent, to close at
Steven Cohen’s family office,
Point72 Asset Management, disclosed that as of May 10 it
owned more than 12.9 million shares of Pandora Media, or 5.4
percent of the total outstanding of the streaming music
company. The stock was flat on May 10 but closed down 4.5
percent on Thursday, May 11 to close at $9.50. The stock is
down 20 percent since the end of the first quarter alone.
Valeant Pharmaceuticals International’s stock
continues to be on the move. Shares of the drug company rose
another 8.8 percent on Thursday and are now up 42 percent over
the past three days alone. They now stand at $13.80.
The average hedge fund gained 0.66 percent in April,
boosting the return to 3.04 percent for the year, according to
data tracker eVestment. All major strategies made money in
April except for commodities, which posted their third-straight
losing month. Event Driven-Activist strategies were the best
performers last month, gaining 2.03 percent in April and 3.70
percent for the year. Activist strategies are up 13.24 percent
over the past 12 months.