Pentair plc (2015 – 2019)

Pentair plc (“Pentair”) is a leading pure play global water treatment company with a comprehensive range of smart, sustainable water solutions for homes, businesses, industry and communities. Pentair is a market leader in North American pool products (pumps, heaters, filters, etc.), and has a strong portfolio of brands in residential and commercial water filtration and flow technology.

Trian was initially attracted to Pentair given the company’s leading brands and products, strong free cash flow, and long-term organic growth across its end-markets. Trian also believed that there was meaningful opportunity to enhance shareholder value by working closely with Pentair’s management to drive growth both organically and by considering various strategic alternatives, including acquisitions and the separation of Pentair’s water and electrical businesses.

In June 2015, Trian announced its investment in Pentair. In September 2015, Ed Garden began attending and participating in meetings of the Board of Directors, and in May 2016, he was appointed as a member of the Board. In addition, Matt Peltz or Brian Baldwin (both Partners of Trian) attended all meetings of the Pentair Board as observers since September 2015.

On May 9, 2017, Pentair announced that its Board of Directors unanimously approved a plan to separate its Water and Electrical businesses into two independent, publicly-traded companies, Pentair (water business) and nVent (electrical business). Trian believed this separation, completed on April 30, 2018, was the logical next step for Pentair as both companies should benefit from market-leading positions in their respective industries, well-recognized brands, attractive margin profiles, strong free cash flow generation and compelling growth opportunities.

On April 30, 2018, Trian Partner Matt Peltz joined the Board of Pentair. As part of the company’s transition, Ed Garden stepped down from the Board of Pentair on April 30, 2018 upon completion of the separation.

On September 10, 2018, Matt Peltz resigned from the Pentair Board to devote more time to current and future board positions. Together with Ed Garden, Matt played an active role in helping guide Pentair into becoming a pure play water company by spinning off nVent Electric.

Trian exited its investment in Pentair in 2019.

Sector: Industrial

Fun Fact: In 2009, Pentair partnered with the Minnesota Twins to develop the innovating “Rain Water Recycle System” for the Twins’ Target Field. The system allows the ballpark to capture, conserve and reuse rain water for irrigating the playing field and washing the stadium seats, saving the city nearly 2 million gallons of water per year.

Company Website:

ESG Highlights:

  • Executive CompensationIn 2018, following the removal of the discretionary component from Pentair’s annual incentive program among other reforms, ISS recommended a vote in favor of “say-on-pay” after previously recommending a vote against in the prior two years
  • Director IndependenceSeven out of eight directors are independent (as of February 1, 2019)
  • Wastewater ReuseMany of Pentair’s water technologies are designed to recycle wastewater and return it safely to the environment – the company’s use of this technology in its own operations saved over 10 million gallons in 2017
  • Project SafewaterFrom its launch in 2007 through 2017, Pentair’s water initiative has helped provide clean drinking water to more than 3 million people globally every day
  • Philanthropic WorkPentair is a founding supporter of The Nature Conservatory’s Upper Tana-Nairobi Water Fund, a public-private initiative that uses natural systems to filter and regulate the water supply of the Tana River, which provides more than 95% of the water for Nairobi’s citizens
  • Energy SavingsPentair was named a 2018 ENERGY STAR Partner of the Year – Sustained Excellence Award winner. Between 2005 and 2018, Pentair’s pumps helped U.S. consumers save $1.98 billion in energy costs

For more information on ESG initiatives at Pentair, please visit

Former Trian Board Members