Activism In Asia Here To Stay

Activism In Asia Here To Stay

As Elliott Management launches a new campaign in Japan, Activist Insight releases first detailed overview of activist investing in Asia.

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A sea change in shareholder activism across Asia has seen the number of companies publicly targeted more than double between 2013 and 2016, according to Activist Insight data. And while 2017 volume is anticipated to fall slightly, activism is far from losing momentum, according to key players in the market.

As many as 38 companies had been subjected to public demands by the end of H1 2017, more than in 2013 as a whole and setting the stage for a projected year-end total of 65.

The data was compiled by Activist Insight for a special report entitled Activist Investing in Asia, which is thought to be the first of its kind. Featuring interviews with activists and governance experts across Asia, the report provides a breakdown of activist campaigns in each of Japan, Hong Kong and China, Singapore, South Korea, and India.

“Although activity remains dramatically lower than in the U.S., several developments suggest that activist investing in Asia will continue to increase, including governments pushing for improved corporate governance, new domestic activist fund launches, and the ready availability of opportunities,” Activist Insight spokesperson Josh Black said in a statement. “Deterrents, such as controlled companies and suspicion of outsiders can be dispelled with sustained effort, as the experience of several activists interviewed for the report highlights.”

Among the details revealed in the report:

  • Activist investor Oasis Management is looking to target South Korean companies, following years of building up its strategy in Japan.
  • New activist funds are launching in Singapore, South Korea, and India.
  • Short sellers are largely undeterred by recent setbacks in Hong Kong and Japan.
  • Foreign institutional investors and family offices are increasingly looked to by activists as fertile ground for their campaigns.

The report also details activist short campaigns against Asian companies between 2013 and 2017, where many short sellers have cut their teeth and where several new territories have been targeted, including the first activist short campaigns in Japan.

To read the report, please click here.

For any questions about the data, or if you have a follow-up request, please contact Josh Black at [email protected] Please note that bespoke data requests may take 24-48 hours depending on the amount of manual work required.


Number of companies publicly subjected to activist demands by company HQ and year

activist investing

Success rates of resolved public activist demands by company HQ*

*Percentages may not total 100% due to rounding.

activist investing

Number of activist short campaigns launched by company HQ and year

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Financial news and data providers Activist Insight and Proxy Insight announced in October 2020 that they had merged to form Insightia, a leader in the field of public company information. Activist Insight was formed in 2012 and offers an extensive range of products including Activist Insight Online, Activist Insight Governance, Activist Insight Vulnerability, Activist Insight Shorts, Activist Insight Monthly magazine, and The Activist Insight Podcast. Proxy Insight has quickly become the world’s leading source of information on global shareholder voting, covering such hot topics as director and auditor elections, “say on pay” resolutions and environmental, social, and governance (ESG) proposals.

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