>> The biggest ever battle to shake up a corporate boardroom is so close that Proctor and Gamble is declaring victory, but its adversary is not conceding defeat. Preliminary results Tuesday suggest shareholders sided with the company in a battle royale pinning P&G, the mega consumer products conglomerate with 65 Billion dollars in annual sales against Nelson Peltz, an activist investor with a $3.5 billion stake in the company, through his hedge fund, Trian.
Peltz agitated for a seat on the board so he could push through his growth plan, which centered around a reorganization into three distinct units. Although he failed, he did win over one important group of shareholders, large institutional ones, says Reuters breaking news columnist Anthony Currie.>> They like the fact also that he's not pushing any particular agenda.
He's just saying, we don't think you're performing well enough. I think I can help, and I want to do it in a proactive way. And also in a way where I'm going to find allies and help you, as opposed to going full tilt for trying to replace half the board or break up the company.
So he was really going for quite an easy going strategy for an activist.>> But P&G, the name behind Tide laundry detergent, Gillette razors, Pampers, and a host of consumer product brands, fought back. Saying Peltz lacked the professional experience to tell the 180 year old company what to do.
And that management was all ready working to shake things up. A costly battle racking up a bill of about $100 million, as both sides tried to sway investors through mailings, phone calls and advertisements. Proctor and Gamble's victory seen as a blow to activist investors, but.>> These guys aren't giving up.
There's plenty of other candidates out there. Look there are a lot of big companies out there who've amassed lot's of units not just P&G. We can look across a spectrum and see lot's of others. Think okay there are plenty of targets we can go after.>> Peltz's defeat not lost on his backers, shares of the DOW component are falling after the early results from this bruising battle.