Activist Elliott raises pressure for Whitbread break-up

Wake up and float the coffee, Costa owner Whitbread told

Wake up and float the coffee, Costa owner Whitbread told

A unit of U.S. activist hedge fund Elliott Management how holds a six-percent stake in Whitbread (LON:WTB), Reuters has reported.

Hedge fund Elliott Advisors has become the second activist investor to call for Whitbread Plc (Frankfurt: WHF4.F - news) to split its hotel and coffee shop businesses after emerging as the largest shareholder in the British company.

Months of research into the pensions and tax implications of such a...

Leisure business Whitbread (WTB) shot to the top of the FTSE 100 leaderboard in early trading on Monday as another activist investor stake builds.

The Sachem Head hedge fund holds a 3.38 percent stake in Whitbread, according to Thomson Reuters Eikon data.

United States hedge fund Sachem Head has a 3.4% stake in Whitbread and has pressed the management to consider a break up of the business as well as a sale and leaseback of its Premier Inn hotel properties. Whitbread, led by Chief Executive Alison Brittain, declined to comment.

"He told the Today programme: "[Elliott] don't necessarily want the properties to be sold the way that more aggressive activists do, they just want two separate companies so they can value hotels alongside, say Hilton, and Costa alongside say the likes of Greggs and they think that will create shareholder value". The company's shares are down almost 5 percent in the past 12 months.

City analysts have also been piling the pressure on Whitbread to take a decision on Costa in recent months.

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