Starboard Wins Ouster Of Darden Board

Oct 10 2014 | 1:45pm ET

Starboard Value’s fellow Darden Restaurants investors handed the hedge fund a sweeping victory in its battle with the company, throwing out Darden’s entire board of directors in favor of a slate nominated by the hedge fund.

All 12 of Starboard’s picks were elected at Darden’s annual meeting in Orlando, Fla., today, including two Starboard executives. The overwhelming win indicates that investors were as angry as Starboard when Darden sold its Red Lobster chain—in spite of the fact that more than half of its shareholders sought a vote on the deal before its consummation.

“We are extremely pleased that necessary changes have been made to Darden’s board and senior management team to pave the way for the implementation of new measures to enhance shareholder value,” James Mitarotonda, CEO of another hedge fund pushing for change at Darden, Barington Capital Group, said. “It will significantly improve the long-term financial performance of the company.”

Starboard recently offered a 294-slide presentation on how to improve things at Darden, which owns, among other chains, the Olive Garden and Longhorn Steakhouse. The hedge fund has pushed for a radical split of Darden into three companies, including a spin-off of its faster-growing chains and its real-estate.

The new board will be tasked with finding a new CEO, following the departure of longtime chief Clarence Otis, a frequent Starboard target. Starboard CEO Jeffrey Smith is expected to serve on the CEO search committee.

In Depth

PAAMCO: Will Inflation Deflate the Asset Bubble?

Jan 30 2018 | 9:49pm ET

As the U.S. shifts from monetary stimulus to fiscal stimulus, market pricing should...


CFA Institute To Add Computer Science To Exam Curriculum

May 24 2017 | 9:25pm ET

Starting in 2019, financial industry executives sitting for the coveted Chartered...

Guest Contributor

Boost Hedge Fund Marketing ROI By Raising Your ROO

Feb 14 2018 | 9:57pm ET

Tasked with delivering returns on client capital, a common dilemma for many alternative...