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D.E. Shaw Slams Emerson’s Eight-Plane Fleet in Call for Breakup

Oct. 15, 2019, 3:14 PM

D.E. Shaw is taking aim at Emerson Electric Co.’s fleet of eight private planes and a helicopter.

The corporate fleet exemplifies a “bloated” cost structure that has made Emerson a “perennial underperformer,” D.E. Shaw said Tuesday in a letter to the company’s board. The hedge fund also cited poor capital allocation decisions, weak cost controls and executive pay incentives tied to the “wrong goals.”

Emerson could boost its market value by 50% -- or about $20 billion -- by splitting into a maker of industrial-automation equipment and a provider of climate controls for buildings, said D.E. Shaw, which owns...

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