Activist Blue Harbour Discloses New Stake in Jack in the Box

(Bloomberg) -- Activist investor Blue Harbour Group disclosed a new stake in restaurant chain Jack in the Box Inc. and may push for changes at the company.

Greenwich, Connecticut-based Blue Harbour owns a 6.8 percent stake in the fast-food company and believes it is undervalued, according to a regulatory filing. The investor thinks Jack in the Box made the right decision to sell Qdoba Restaurant Corp. and divest a majority of its remaining company-owned units.

Jack in the Box is now in a position to reap the benefits of a more focused corporate entity with improved profitability, Blue Harbour said.

The firm has held talks with management and other parties, and may continue to seek discussions on topics including capital structure, board composition and strategic alternatives, the filing shows.

“As Jack in the Box executes its plan, our lens will be steady on the company’s progress toward unlocking and delivering value we see in it,” said Blue Harbour managing director Robb LeMasters in an emailed statement.

A representative for Jack in the Box wasn’t immediately available for comment.

Blue Harbour, run by Cliff Robbins, previously held a stake in Jack in the Box from 2010 to 2013. During that period the chain’s restaurants underwent a successful transition from being predominantly company-owned to franchisee-owned, LeMasters said.

Blue Harbour isn’t the only activist fund involved with Jack in the Box. The company reached an agreement last month with Jana Partners, the fund run by Barry Rosenstein, which will see two new directors appointed to the board.

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