Janus Henderson, a top-three shareholder in Smurfit Kappa, has cut its stake in the firm last week from 3.9% to below 3%, according to the Irish Times.
The London-based investor was in support of the potential takeover bid from International Paper, and he publicly indicated that it could mount a shareholder revolt back in May.
Smurfit Kappa's shares reached as high as €36.76 per share last week, 12% higher than its record closing price in April amid the IP speculation.
A New Chapter
Lars Kjellberg, an analyst with the Swiss investment bank, said Smurfit Kappa’s four-year investment plan, worth €1.6 billion, means that it has “entered a new chapter that we believe should further enhance the attractiveness of the shares”.
He added that Smurfit Kappa would be able to deliver an average of 12.6% compound annual growth in earnings over three years.
Janus Henderson's stake sale comes at a time when investors believe that Smurfit's shares are reflecting an optimistic outlook as 'clouds gather on the horizon' for the global economy.
It has been widely reported that Smurfit Kappa's reluctance to make a deal with IP had disappointed some investors, as its shares soared amid speculation only to fall from grace a few weeks later.
The Times reports that shares at SKG may reflect a sense of lingering speculation of a takeover.
Shares in Smurfit Kappa fell 0.8% to at €36.32 on Tuesday, leaving the group with a market value of €8.62 billion.
Both Smurfit kappa and a spokesperson for Janus Henderson refused to comment.
© 2018 Checkout – your source for the latest Irish retail news. Article by Aidan O’Sullivan. Click subscribe to sign up for the Checkout print edition.