Activist investor Ed Bramson has embarked on a charm offensive of Barclays’ (LON:BARC) top shareholders in an effort to rally support for a proposed shake-up of the bank, The Telegraph has reported. The news came after it recently emerged that Bramson-led Sherborne had taken up a five-percent stake in the group.
Barclays’ share price has slipped into the red in London this morning, having given up 0.56 percent to 212.60p as of 08:30 BST. The stock is underperforming the broader UK market, with the benchmark FTSE 100 index currently standing 0.05 percent in the red at 7,194.74 points.
Barmson looks to force shake-up
The Telegraph reported over the weekend that Ed Bramson had told major investors that he wanted to see Barclays overhaul its investment banking arm, ramping up returns and stepping up one-off payouts. The newspaper notes that the City fears that he could try to force the FTSE 100 group to sell its investment bank.
Bramson, however, is understood to instead want Barclays to turbocharge returns in investment banking by tweaking its activities, which could see the blue-chip lender pull out of markets where it is struggling to compete, or has weak performance, and focus on the areas where it has a dominant position and generates the most profit.
Analysts on blue-chip lender
Jefferies, which sees Barclays as a ‘buy,’ set a price target of 265p on the shares yesterday, while Deutsche Bank, which also has a ‘buy’ rating on the stock, set a valuation of 250p last week. According to MarketBeat, the FTSE 100 group currently has a consensus ‘buy’ rating on Barclays, with an average price target of 229.56p. The blue-chip lender is scheduled to update investors on its first-quarter performance on April 26.