UPDATE 1-ValueAct Capital's Ubben touts Willis Group as buy idea
NEW YORK, Sept 17 (Reuters) - Jeffrey Ubben, chief executive of ValueAct Capital, recommended global insurance broker Willis Group Holdings PLC as a buy idea at an investment conference on Tuesday.
Speaking at the Value Investing Congress in New York City, Ubben said the company is benefiting from a new chief executive and industry growth. Dominic Casserley became CEO of Willis in Jan. 2013.
Shares of Willis Group were up 0.6 percent in intraday trading Tuesday.
Ubben, whose firm took a $2 billion stake in Microsoft Corp earlier this year, declined to comment on the company. "I can't really talk about Microsoft because we are in the middle of stuff," Ubben said.
Under an agreement made public on Aug. 30, Microsoft is offering ValueAct's president, Mason Morfit, a seat on the company's board.
Reuters reported in July that the activist fund manager was seeking a board seat as poor quarterly results hurt Microsoft's stock price. The San Francisco-based ValueAct has about $12 billion in assets and owns 0.8 percent of Microsoft's shares.