Clever directors oppose board spill proposal

The board of telecom company Clever Communications (ASX:CVA) has unanimously recommended shareholders reject a board spill proposal lodged by angry shareholders.

Microequities Asset Management and the LJ Catelan and ML Catelan Superannuation funds have called an EGM to allow shareholders to vote on the proposal of removing chairman David Williams and non-executive director Philip Powell, replacing them with Carlos Gil and Danny Herceg.

The shareholders have expressed anger over Clever’s decision to sell its 13.7% stake in Wimax operator BigAir in what they allege was an “ad-hoc” manner, without shareholder approval, and at a price 80% below the current BigAir share price.

They also accuse Williams and Powell of having a conflict of interest, because they are employees of corporate advisory firm Kidder Williams, who provides services for Clever.

But the board responded with a vote of confidence for Powell and Williams, and said the decision to sell BigAir was made to maximise shareholder value and that Clever’s only business with Kidder Williams was related solely to Clever’s takeover bid for BigAir.

The board further alleged that the shareholders have links to BigAir, and that their real intention is to stack the board with members who would be amenable to a friendly takeover from BigAir.