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Thursday, January 21, 2016
7:30 – 8:00am: Continental Breakfast
8:00 – 9:30am: Program
Room 290, Stanford Law School
“Shareholder activism” is in the news almost every day. But how does it really play out here in Silicon Valley? Is activism beneficial to (some) shareholders in the short term but harmful to the company (especially Silicon Valley companies) in the long term?
|Jesse Cohn manages the US equity activist efforts and technology portfolio for Elliott Management Corporation, a $27 billion hedge fund based in New York. Jesse has pursued investments in a number of companies for Elliott Management, including Informatica Corp, Riverbed Technology, EMC Corp, Juniper Networks, BMC Software and Brocade Systems. On behalf of Elliott, he sits on the boards of Citrix Systems, MSC Software, BMC Software (observer), E2Open, Mitchell International (observer) and Ark Continuity. Jesse is also a frequent speaker on activism and governance-related topics and has spoken at the Stanford Directors College, among others.
|Penny Herscher is an experienced Silicon Valley technology executive, entrepreneur and public company board director. With 20 years experience as a high-tech CEO, Penny’s strengths are building advanced technology products and teams, growing revenue and developing world-class global customers, as well as coaching CEOs, executives and entrepreneurs to help them achieve business and career growth. She took her first company, Simplex, public and then sold it to Cadence Design Systems. She serves on the board and chairs the compensation committees at Rambus and Lumentum, and is still involved as chair of her last company, FirstRain.
|Steven Davidoff Solomon is professor of law at UC Berkeley and co-director of the Berkeley Center for Law, Business and the Economy. Steven’s research focuses on financial regulation, hedge funds and private equity, mergers and acquisitions, deals and deal theory and jurisdictional competition. He has a particular interest in international issues and interdisciplinary research in law and finance. Steven writes a weekly column for The New York Times as The Deal Professor, which primarily focuses on corporate issues. He also writes regularly for The New York Times DealBook and in trade journals, lectures and has testified before the U.S. Senate.
|David Berger (moderator) is a member of the board of directors at Wilson Sonsini Goodrich & Rosati (WSGR) and chair of the policy committee. David is also chair of the pro bono committee and serves on the board of the firm’s venture capital fund. David is a leader in WSGR’s corporate governance practice. He specializes in representing officers, directors and shareholders in corporate control contests and mergers and acquisitions. David has litigated and tried several of the leading corporate governance and takeover cases, including leading several trials in the Delaware Court of Chancery and arguing cases in the Delaware Supreme Court.