ABB shareholder Artisan pushes for spin-off of Power Grids

Wed Sep 14, 2016 1:09pm EDT
 
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NEW YORK, Sept 14 (Reuters) - Another shareholder of Zurich-based conglomerate ABB has called for the company to spin off its Power Grids division, in an effort to streamline the company to improve its stock price.

U.S. fund manager Artisan Partners, which holds around 2.5 percent of ABB's shares, told Reuters it supports a Power Grids spin-off plan. Cevian Capital, a European-based activist investor, also wants the spin-off and has boosted its stake to 6.2 percent to push for the separation. The company is currently reviewing whether to pursue such a move.

"We think that the review that they're doing with this asset is just one of the things the company can do to streamline the business," said Artisan Managing Director David Samra, who is a portfolio manager at the fund. "We view this as a first step in creating a much more focused organization." (Reporting by Michael Flaherty; Editing by Paul Simao)