Lew Urges Myer Investors To Back His Board Nominee
Major Myer investor Solomon Lew has written to the department store’s shareholders with a plea to back his nominee Terry McCartney for board election at next week’s AGM.
This comes as CGI Glass Lewis becomes the second proxy firm to advise against Lew’s choice for board representation, calling McCartney a “dissident nominee” and voicing concerns over conflicts of interest.
Lew is chairman of Premier Investments, which holds close to 23 per cent of Myer’s stock. McCartney has been a non-executive director at Premier since 2016. He is also the former managing director of Myer Grace Bros. Lew has been fighting for a seat on the Myer board for six years.
“Having considered the arguments made by both sides in this contested solicitation, we do not believe Premier has provided a sufficiently compelling argument that appointing the Dissident Nominee is warranted or necessary at this time, or that doing so would be likely to lead to a more favourable outcome for all Myer shareholders,” Glass Lewis’ report reads.
Lew disagrees, showcasing McCartney’s bona fides in his letter to Myer shareholders.
According to Lew, McCartney was part of a winning team, which had “delivered 174 per cent growth in statutory net profit after tax, from $104 million in FY16 to $285 million in FY22.
“Myer’s statutory net profit after tax over the same time period has decreased 18 per cent from $60 million in FY16 to $49 million in FY22,” he points out.
Lew assured that McCartney will operate in “a collaborative and cohesive manner with the Myer board and takes his fiduciary duties very seriously, including in relation to managing conflicts of interest (perceived or otherwise).”
A Premier spokesman further dismissed Glass Lewis’ advise.
“CGI Glass Lewis has somehow managed to accuse Terry McCartney of being a “dissident” nominee director while also noting his failure to criticise the performance, strategic direction and governance of a board he hopes to join,” the spokesman said.
“Terry is an accomplished retailer with more than 40 years’ experience. In fact, he is the only director with department store experience standing for election at the Myer AGM. Smart shareholders will make their own decisions.”