Activist hedge fund TCI, which last week forced the London Stock Exchange (LSE) to call a shareholder meeting, has set out its reasons for wanting to oust the bourse's chairman.
In a presentation to be aired at the shareholder meeting on 19 December, TCI will allege that chairman Donald Brydon “has run a poor process with regards to CEO succession and shareholder engagement”, after the LSE's chief executive Xavier Rolet stepped down last week.
TCI, which believes that Rolet's departure was catalysed by Brydon, said that the chairman “has a long track record of dismissing CEOs” and that “shareholders have lost faith in Donald Brydon”.
It added that the LSE “dismissed a world class CEO without providing any good reasons”, and that “it will be difficult to find a new world class CEO to serve under Donald Brydon”.
TCI, which is headed by Sir Christopher Hohn, referenced a statement from Rolet saying he had stepped down “at the request of the board” and accused the LSE of using confidentiality provisions to avoid telling shareholders the full details.
With regards to Brydon's history of ousting chief executives, TCI refers to five incidents stretching back to 1996. The first was at the LSE itself, as Brydon was a board member when chief executive Michael Lawrence was fired, but also cover his time at Allied Domecq, Scottish Power, Smith's and Sage.
TCI was keen to emphasise the LSE's outperformance under Rolet's reign, noting there had been a stock price return of 356 per cent over the last five years.