Not happy: Departed founders cause havoc at Murray River Group AGM
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Two recently departed founders of Murray River Group have voted to scuttle most of the Board’s proposals at the company’s annual general meeting.
At the meeting on Wednesday, the company’s two founders Erling Sorensen and Jamie Nemtsas voted their 20.4 million shares “against all resolutions”, the company told investors.
Together, the pair managed to prevent the re-election of a director and the appointment of an auditor, and knocked back a 10 per cent placement capacity and the remuneration report.
“This is particularly destabilising, given Mr Sorensen was on the board when these resolutions were proposed, and had endorsed these resolutions in his role as a director of the company,” the company said.
Murray River Group (ASX:MRG) added that “the shareholding associated with Mr Sorenson” had nominated the auditor, only to vote against the appointment at the AGM.
BLBD and Meredith Nominees, entities controlled by Bryan Meredith, a major early investor in Murray River Organics business, also voted against all of the proposals. Together they own about 5 per cent of Murray River Group (ASX:MRG) shares.
The only resolution that survived was approval for a previous share placement.
Neither Mr Farrow nor Mr Sorenson or Mr Nemtsas responded to inquiries from Stockhead.
A company spokesman said vote against all resolutions was particularly destabilising.
“As major shareholders of MRG, the board understands it is pertinent to maintain a dialogue with both Erling and Jamie.”
Mr Nemtsas quit in August and Mr Sorenson followed him out the door in early November, replaced by George Haggar from Costa Group.
In a research note after the downgrade, Morgans analysts Belinda Moore and Kurt Gelsomino were very positive about the appointment and immediate start of George Haggar, but said rising debt levels were a risk should the business have another bad year.
A new front opens
The company is also facing down a confusing request to requisition a meeting to roll the board.
The day before the AGM, BLBD and Meredith Nominees requisitioned a meeting to remove Craig Farrow, Donald Brumley and Lisa Hennessy as directors — but they sent the order to the wrong business, subsidiary Murray River Organics.
As they don’t own shares in this company, the directors can’t requisition a meeting 249D of the Corporations Act.
They proposed Andrew Monk, Steven Si and Keith Mentiplay as directors.
Murray River Group shares closed flat at 44.5c.