Jana Partners has reduced its position in the pet-food distributor to 3,620,513 shares. Jana sold a total of 753,163 Freshpet shares between June 12 and August 9, at prices ranging from $66.39 to $82.76 per share. In early June, Jana reported a 9.2% interest in Freshpet and has now reduced its stake to 7.5%.
In May, Jana disclosed four nominees for election to Freshpet's board at this year's annual meeting, originally scheduled for July 25. Jana contested the date, claiming that it was an attempt to limit the window for nomination notices. Jana pointed out that since "at least 2015," Freshpet has held annual meetings in either September or October.
On June 1, Jana filed a lawsuit against Freshpet's board, alleging that the accelerated scheduling breached the board's fiduciary responsibility. Jana also claimed that Freshpet used Chairman Charles Norris' resignation as an opportunity to reduce the number of seats up for election from four to three. Norris is not seeking re-election this year, and Jana believes that the board reclassified Norris' seat for the 2024 election, effectively eliminating one vacancy.
Freshpet responded on June 6, stating that it plans to hold the 2023 meeting in October and will allow Jana to have four nominees. There has been no update on Jana's litigation.
Decreases in Holdings
Dun & Bradstreet Holdings (DNB)
Thomas H. Lee Partners cut its holdings of the provider of business analytics by nearly 30%, down to 35,921,845 shares. On Aug. 17, Thomas H. Lee Partners sold 13,657,926 Dun & Bradstreet shares through a Rule 144 sale, at a price of $11.12 each. No reason was cited for Thomas H. Lee Partners’ cut to its Dun & Bradstreet stake that now stands at 8.2%.
Dun & Bradstreet stock hasn’t recovered since tumbling in February after a disappointing fourth-quarter report. Shares remain down about 12% this year.
Valaris Limited (VAL)
Oak Hill Advisors slashed its stake in the contract offshore-drilling company to 4,766,016 shares. Oak Hill sold 4,200,000 Valaris shares at a price of $73.10 each through an Aug. 7 block sale. No reason was given for the sale that leaves Oak Hill with an almost 6.5% interest in Valaris. Oak Hill managing director Joseph Goldschmid sits on Valaris’ board, and his recent restricted stock grants aren’t included in the above ownership figures.
Garrett Motion (GTX)
Baupost Group cleaved its stake in the automotive hardware maker to 5,987,289 shares. After Baupost reported the sale of a little more than 2.8 million Garrett Motion shares in mid-July, Baupost sold 1,900,000 more Garrett Motion shares priced at $7.90 apiece on Aug. 2.
Garrett Motion then repurchased 8,000,000 of its shares from Baupost on Aug. 9 at a price of $7.70 each. Baupost is now left with a 2.3% interest in Garrett Motion, well below the 5% threshold that would require the disclosure of any further Garrett Motion stock sales.