Science & Tech

New study suggests staggered boards hurt shareholders

1 min read

Harvard Law researchers collaborate on research

Staggered boards hurt shareholders of hostile bid targets even when a majority of the board is made of independent directors, and they do not appear to benefit shareholders of targets that are acquired in a negotiated acquisition, concludes a study conducted by Harvard Law School professors Lucian Bebchuk, John Coates, and Guhan Subramanian. This research expands upon an earlier study by the three Harvard professors, which provided the first empirical evidence about how staggered boards affect the outcome of hostile bids. The research found that companies with a staggered board were much more likely to remain independent and block value-increasing bids and that staggered boards produced a loss of 8 percent to 10 percent of corporate value for target-company shareholders.