The role of activism in corporate restructuring
: the case study of Elliott-EDP

  • Eduardo Miguel Pereira Torpes Santana (Student)

Student thesis: Master's Thesis


The recent growth of activism in the corporate landscape has presented itself with a change of paradigm in the governance of firms. In that sense, the literature on the topic is not unanimous regarding the creation of value driven by activism. This research aims to explore this topic, expanding on the dynamics of the relation between management and activist investors, as well as its effects on the targeted companies. Through the review of academic research and basing on news as sources of information, the multitude of outcomes from past activist campaigns in terms of its success suggests a practical example of the lack of consensus in the literature. Taking focus on the campaign run by the American fund, Elliott Management, on the Portuguese company, EDP – Energias de Portugal, supported by public information available in news sources, reports and presentations this research develops an analysis on its determinants and reflects on the overall success of the operation. The result of this research suggests activism may create value, yet its successfulness is contingent on a set of variables worthy of further analysis. Among these, there is an intrinsic component to be considered in an activist campaign which can be simply defined as the established dynamic between the activist investor and management of the targeted company. In this context, the background of the targeted company, motivation and size of the activist investor, as well as the level of cooperation between both agents are some of the determinants deemed most influential on the overall success of activist operations.
Date of Award5 Jul 2021
Original languageEnglish
Awarding Institution
  • Universidade Católica Portuguesa
SupervisorLuis Pacheco (Supervisor)


  • Activism
  • Corporate governance
  • Value-creation


  • Mestrado em Finanças

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