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Investor activism cannot fix Unilever’s trust deficit

Investor confidence has taken a hit by the CEO’s penchant for purpose rather than profit, along with a badly botched-up sales warning

©The Financial Times Limited 2020 Sep 16, 2021 / 12:33 PM IST
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Investor activism cannot fix Unilever’s trust deficit

REUTERS/Shailesh Andrade - RTS4FM6

Bryce Elder The collective noun for analysts is a consensus. Few other professions can find such virtue in groupthink. Take Unilever. As an investment, the group has been dead money since the arrival of Alan Jope as chief executive in 2019, and for nearly two years beforehand. Investor confidence has been eroded by Jope’s fondness for talking about purpose rather than profit, along with a badly bungled sales warning within his first year. Yet twice as many sellside analysts still rate...

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