Activist investor Elliott Management has taken a 5.32 percent stake in Uniper, putting pressure on Finland’s Fortum to sweeten its 8.05 billion euro ($9.51 billion) takeover offer for the German energy company.
The bet marks Elliott’s latest foray into Germany’s M&A arena after the fund took a stake in drugmaker Stada and successfully extracted a higher offer for the group from private equity firms Bain Capital and Cinven.
The stake is worth 480 million euros based on Uniper’s closing share price.
Uniper’s shares closed 3.9 percent higher at 25.88 euros, their highest level since the group’s listing in September 2016.
ELLIOTT MANAGEMENT CORP is an American hedge fund management firm. It serves as the management affiliate of American hedge funds flagship Elliott Associates L.P. and Elliott International Limited. Elliott was founded by Paul Singer, who also serves as CEO of the management company, which is based in New York City. From inception, Elliott has generated for its investors a 14.6% net compound annual return, compared to 10.9% for the S&P 500 stock index, and now has more than US$34 billion in assets under management. As of the first quarter of 2015, Elliott's portfolio is worth over $8 billion.
UNIPER, with total sales of around 67 billion euros in 2016, operates roughly 40 gigawatts of power plants in Europe and Russia. It has hydroelectric, coal- and gas-fired plants as well as stakes in gas pipelines, liquefied natural gas terminals and nuclear plants across Europe, plus energy trading operations.