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Wolf Pack Activism

59 Pages Posted: 23 Nov 2014 Last revised: 13 Apr 2017

Alon Brav

Duke University - Fuqua School of Business

Amil Dasgupta

London School of Economics (LSE); Centre for Economic Policy Research (CEPR); European Corporate Governance Institute (ECGI)

Richmond D. Mathews

University of Maryland - Department of Finance

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Date Written: April 1, 2017


Blockholder monitoring is key to corporate governance, but blockholders large enough to exercise significant unilateral influence are rare. Mechanisms that enable small blockholders to exert collective influence are therefore important. It is alleged that institutional blockholders sometimes implicitly coordinate their interventions, with one acting as “lead” activist and others as periphera l”wolf pack” members. We present a model of wolf pack activism. Our model formalizes a key source of complementarity across the engagement strategies of activists and highlights the catalytic role played by the leader. We also characterize share acquisition in pack formation, providing testable implications on ownership and price dynamics.

Keywords: corporate governance; blockholder monitoring; institutional investors; reputation concerns; strategic complementarity

JEL Classification: G34, G23

Suggested Citation

Brav, Alon and Dasgupta, Amil and Mathews, Richmond D., Wolf Pack Activism (April 1, 2017). Robert H. Smith School Research Paper No. RHS 2529230; European Corporate Governance Institute (ECGI) - Finance Working Paper No. 501/2017. Available at SSRN: or

Alon Brav

Duke University - Fuqua School of Business ( email )

Box 90120
Durham, NC 27708-0120
United States
919-660-2908 (Phone)
919-684-2818 (Fax)

Amil Dasgupta (Contact Author)

London School of Economics (LSE) ( email )

Houghton Street
London WC2A 2AE
United Kingdom
+44 20 7955 7458 (Phone)
+44 20 7955 7420 (Fax)

Centre for Economic Policy Research (CEPR)

77 Bastwick Street
London, EC1V 3PZ
United Kingdom

European Corporate Governance Institute (ECGI) ( email )

B-1050 Brussels

Richmond D. Mathews

University of Maryland - Department of Finance ( email )

Robert H. Smith School of Business
Van Munching Hall
College Park, MD 20742
United States

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