Kohl's Gains as Activist Investors Look to Dress Up Its Board

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Kohl’s (KSS) - Get Report touched 53-weeks highs for a second trading day on Monday as a group of activist investors pressured the department store chain to nominate a slate of its directors to the board.

Kohl's shares gained more than 10% on Monday after rallying more than 8% to a 52-week high on Friday as a group of activist investors including Macellum Advisors, Ancora Holdings and Legion Partners Asset Management said the company wasn't moving fast enough to streamline operations and turn itself around.

The group, which holds a roughly 9.5% stake in Kohl’s, earlier this year nominated nine directors to join Kohl’s 12-person board. The activists have been looking to place experienced retailers on the board to work with CEO Michelle Gass, and want her to consider a sale-leaseback of some non-core real estate, a person familiar with the matter told the Wall Street Journal.

Like other major U.S. retailers, Kohl’s struggled as the pandemic took hold in early 2020, though the retailer had faced struggles before the pandemic shuttered its doors, logging about a 1.3% drop in total revenue in the year ended February 2020.

"The Kohl's Board and management team have been engaged in discussions with the investor group since early December and we remain open to hearing new ideas," Kohl's said in a statement.

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