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Elevation Capital demands unreasonable: NZX

The NZX says it has rejected six "unreasonable" demands from fund manager Elevation Capital.

Monday, October 8th 2018, 2:37PM

The manager took aim at the stock exchange operator last week, calling for it to slash head count and sell its funds management business.

In a new response, the NZX board has slammed its requests.

Elevation had wanted three directors - Craig Stobo, Christopher Swasbrook and Michael Daniels - added to the NZX board, and for three of its current directors to resign.

"This is an outlandish position for a shareholder with approximately 2.3% of the company, and would ride roughshod over the interests of other shareholders," the NZX board said in response.

"Like all shareholders, Elevation Capital may nominate directors for election at NZX’s annual meeting."

It said it would not adopt Elevation Capital's proposed business strategy, which it said would maximise shareholder returns.

"Elevation Capital’s proposed strategy largely borrows from NZX’s already-published strategy. NZX does not believe the areas of difference would create additional value for shareholders. NZX also does not believe the individual named would add value."

Elevation also wanted NZX directors to refund the cost of a recent overseas trip, but the board said it was high value for the NZX.

"The board will always engage with shareholders on reasonable concerns, and have sought to do so in this case. However, after carefully considering these demands from a shareholder with approximately 2.3% of company shares, the board deemed them unreasonable.

"If Elevation Capital has support to call a special meeting of shareholders (noting there is a 5% threshold), NZX will use it as an opportunity to further explain the strategy laid out in November 2017 and the good progress made to date. However, NZX would prefer to focus on working for our customers and shareholders to build a stronger capital market for New Zealand."

Tags: Elevation NZX

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