GM gives details of contacts with Einhorn, CEO Barra's pay

Mon Apr 3, 2017 6:31pm EDT
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By Nick Carey

DETROIT (Reuters) - General Motors Co (GM.N: Quote) on Monday outlined in a regulatory filing contacts with billionaire hedge fund manager David Einhorn who went public last week with a plan to boost GM's value and announced its slate of board nominees, all of whom currently serve on the board.

Einhorn, who runs hedge fund Greenlight Capital, has proposed that GM create two classes of stock, one that pays a dividend and one that does not, to boost the No. 1 U.S. carmaker's share price.

GM has rejected the proposal and rating agencies have said it would negatively affect the company's credit rating. Other investors in the carmaker have also given the proposal from Einhorn, who runs Greenlight Capital, a frosty reception.

Einhorn has said he would take his plan to GM shareholders through a proxy contest where he hopes to win board seats, though he has not released any names.

According to GM's proxy filing, Einhorn first reached out to the company last August, and followed with a number of in-person meetings, teleconferences and calls, including with GM chief executive Mary Barra.

GM said it also analyzed Einhorn's proposal including discussions with rating agencies.

In December GM's board reviewed analyses of Einhorn's proposal conducted by management and financial advisers and "determined that it was not in the best interests" of GM or shareholders.

Greenlight, which has a 4.9 percent stake in GM including options, declined to comment.   Continued...

FILE PHOTO --  Mary Barra, chairwoman and CEO of General Motors, discusses the future of the auto industry and the state of the U.S. economy in Washington, DC, U.S. February 28, 2017. REUTERS/Yuri Gripas/File Photo