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Activist investors take aim at cloud vendors Anaplan and Everbridge


Steven Birdsall is Anaplan Inc.’s chief revenue officer. Frank Calderoni was Anaplan Inc. president and chief Executive Officer. They spoke to traders during Anaplan Inc. s initial public offerings on the New York Stock Exchange.

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This week, activists investors took aim at the cloud software sector that has been suffering from the decline of stock markets.

The incident began on Thursday morning when Ancora Holdings wrote a letter to board members EverbridgeThe software allows companies to respond quickly in times of emergency. Everbridge’s final CEO resigned abruptlyAncora has urged the company to seek a buyer, rather than hire a new leader in December.

Two hedge funds, well-known for their activism campaigns, disclosed stakes in a financial planning software vendor on Thursday. AnaplanAnd they stated they are looking for four new members to the company’s Board of Directors.

Although Anaplan and Everbridge face different challenges internally, they are part of an investor group that has been severely affected this year. Investors have shifted away from growth and risk to invest in areas such as energy and utilities.

Before this year’s market crash, cloud companies were a common target for activists. Stocks have outperformed many years ago, so there is little chance to create value. Many companies are not able to make the operating profits that activist would like.

One exception was file-sharing apps. BoxCloudera, the big data software company Cloudera which both had outperformed their peers.

BoxStarboard Value was defeated in a proxy war in September. Shareholders were victorious. reelecting CEO Aaron LevieStarboard turned away three of its nominees for the board, as well as two other board incumbents. Cloudera became private after Carl Icahn, a prominent activist, made it so. took a positionStock

As the year begins, the cloud basket is falling. Activists are ready to take the leap. The WisdomTree Cloud Computing Fund has fallen 21% since the start of 2022, while the S&P 500 index is down 6.4%.

Everbridge and Anaplan as of the beginning 2021

Ancora expressed concernsEverbridge spoke out about the poor performance of federal officials and management turnover. He said that a change in CEO would not solve all the problems.

Ancora said that Everbridge should now face the task of rebuilding nearly every element of its marketing efforts, restructuring sales forces and rebuilding lost muscle in the Marketing Department. The current management cannot address these problems, even though they are possible to solve.

Everbridge shares surged 13% following the news. However, the stock remains 77% below its February 2021 all-time high.

The board of directors respondedThe letter was signed by Everbridge, who informed investors it would be reviewing Ancora’s comment. Everbridge indicated that any potential acquisitions have been halted to allow it to concentrate on the integration of its products and lower costs. It also reiterated its desire to hire a CEO.

Everbridge explained that Ancora is open to all possibilities of increasing shareholder value.

Attractive opportunity

Everbridge has seen Anaplan’s volatility rise as much, but Anaplan isn’t experiencing the same. Since February 2021 when the stock peak, it has dropped 40%. On Friday, shares rose 7.6%.

Keith Meister’s Corvex Management and Scott Ferguson’s Sachem Head Capital Management teamed upAnaplan to make changes. Meister was the former CEO of Icahn Enterprises and signed an agreement to coordinate their efforts earlier in this month.

Based on regulatory filingsOn Thursday, Corvex & Sachem Head purchased Anaplan shares. They considered them undervalued and an “attractive investment opportunity.” Jonathan Soros was also a son to investor George Soros and joined the purchase spree through JS Capital Management.

Anaplan shares outstanding are held by these three companies together at 9% each filings show.

Anaplan is in competition with legacy software vendors such as IBM, OracleAnd SAP. According to the company, November was a good month. slowing growthPiper Sandler told clients that the stock’s recovery thesis was “stalled” in terms of its billings, current performance obligation and other issues. 15 percent of the shares fell.

Corvex representative Frank Calderoni, Anaplan CEO, spoke to Corvex and shared their opinion on Anaplan’s business. According to one filing,

Corvex informed Anaplan that in February it planned to nominate Meister to Anaplan’s board. Anaplan was told by Sachem Head it planned to nominate three persons. FactSet ranks Corvex as the largest activist firm, having launched 28 campaigns so far.

Anaplan declined to comment on requests and has not yet issued a statement regarding the efforts of the activists.

WATCH: Hightower’s Stephanie Link says Anaplan is set up for earnings