Activist investor, Laxey Partners has called for an extraordinary general meeting to remove three directors and appoint an independent chairman at Aim-listed Hirco.
In a Stock Exchange announcement this morning the Indian developer said Laxey had called for the removal of three directors: Niranjan Hiranandani, David Burton and Nigel McGowan, to be replaced by Andrew Pegge, Michael Haxby, John Bourbon and Aled Rhys-Jones.
Laxey, which owns a 10% stake in the company, has also called for a director independent of the Hiranandani family, the major shareholder, to act as chairman.
Hirco said it was taking legal advice about the ‘validity of the proposed requisition and due process’ and that it would be seeking shareholder support against the proposals.
It said: ‘It [the board] considers the proposals are not in the company’s best interests and are misguided. Hirco’s sole assets are preference share investments in Hiranandani Group projects which it neither owns nor controls.
'The board considers that the best interests of Hirco shareholders as a whole are best served by preserving the structured board arrangements put in place at IPO to oversee the joint venture with Hiranandani.’
Last month, Hirco abandoned a reverse take-over by Hiranandani which would have handed the family majority control, in the face of shareholder opposition to losing their preferential claim on £350.8m of shares that pay an annual dividend of 12%.
At the time, Laxey described the plans as ‘shocking and ill-conceived’.