Dominion Diamond investors to push for boardroom shake-up: source
By Susan Taylor and Euan Rocha
TORONTO (Reuters) - A group of activist shareholders plans to ask for several seats on Dominion Diamond Corp's (DDC.TO: Quote) board at a meeting with the company planned for early January and will seek to put forward its own slate of directors if it cannot oust the miner's chairman and its chief executive, according to a source familiar with the matter.
The investor group, which owns a 5.4 percent stake in Dominion and is led by Toronto-based hedge fund K2 & Associates, said in a filing this week that it believes the Canadian diamond miner's policies have hurt its share price.
The group is unhappy with the performance of Dominion CEO Brendan Bell and Chairman Robert Gannicott, said the source, who is an investor in Dominion and familiar with the situation but not authorized to publicly discuss the matter.
"My understanding is that if the group is unsuccessful in securing the resignations of the chairman and CEO, they will request a meeting of shareholders and put forward an alternate slate of directors," the source said.
On Thursday, Dominion announced the surprise resignations of two independent board members - Dr. Fiona Perrott-Humphrey and Ollie Oliveira - who have a wealth of experience in the mining industry. Dominion did not provide any detail, and said the two resigned for "personal reasons."
BMO analyst Edward Sterck said he has no reason to doubt the company's statement, but added that the timing is likely to lead the market to believe the events are linked to the pressure from activists. Continued...