ACG ‘frustrating shareholders’ wishes’ after blocking Gabelli Value Plus+ liquidation vote
Investors want their money back
Shareholders in Gabelli Value Plus+ (GVP) continue to hold out hope for a solution on the future of the trust, after criticising its majority shareholder Associated Capital Group (ACG) for frustrating their wishes by blocking a proposed liquidation vote.
The situation was described as “rather a mess” by analysts at Stifel, while head of investment company research at QuotedData James Carthew said it was “one of the more outrageous moves we have seen in the investment company sector for some time”.
Numis accused ACG of “seek[ing] to frustrate the board’s plans”, but CG Asset Management’s Peter Spiller, whose clients hold around 3% of shares, told Investment Week he hoped ACG would eventually relent and “vote to co-operate with the board”.
GVP has been under fire for over a year now, since its second-largest shareholder Investec Wealth & Investment (IWI) wrote an open letter, criticising the trust’s board for “not acting proactively on behalf of shareholders” and calling for an early continuation vote.
IWI’s criticism was wide-ranging, focusing on poor performance since its 2015 IPO as well as high management fees. It sought justification for the merger arbitrage element of the portfolio and clarification on the value add from small-tail positions.
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