Tag Archives | USPX

Let's Get Rid of Caveman Directors

Women serving on corporate boards are far more likely than their male counterparts to favor increased boardroom diversity, new regulations for executive compensation, proxy access for shareowners and enhanced risk management, according to a new survey of corporate directors  by Heidrick & Struggles, WomenCorporateDirector (WCD), and Dr. Boris Groysberg. (Survey: Men and Women Corporate Directors […]

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Free USPX Training – Learn How to File Shareowner Proposals

For a second year, the United States Proxy Exchange (USPX) is offering shareowners one-on-one training in the intricacies of filing shareowner proposals. The instructor will be a prominent shareowner activist who has successfully filed hundreds of shareowner proposals. The training is free for USPX members, and instruction is provided entirely by phone and e-mail. To […]

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Symantec Reverses Course: Won't hold a Virtual-Only Meeting Next Year

As reported earlier (See Protesting Symantec’s All-Virtual Annual Meeting, 22 Sep, 2010) Symantec Corporation set the pathetic precedent of being the first Fortune 500 company to hold a virtual-only annual meeting without shareowner-approved safeguards to protect participant rights. That happened September 20, 2010. But two weeks later, Symantec has backed down. Responding to a letter writing […]

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Proxy Access D-Day

I haven’t been following all the chatter around the deadline for filing for proxy access, since it is highly unlikely I will be taking part until some group like USPX works to group to proxies of individual investors. However, those with the need to know can find the information at CorporateCounsel.net (Mea Culpa: Proxy Access’s […]

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Symantec Audio-Only Meeting Gets National Coverage

At last, there have been a couple of articles in the national press on the Symantec Corp. virtual-only meeting. First, Ross Kerber reported for Reuters, Shareholder meetings via Web mute dissident voices (9/24/2010) Kerber observed, Soon movies might be the only place to hear pointed outbursts from investors. This year more than a dozen companies […]

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Protesting Symantec's All-Virtual Meeting

Steven Towns, writing for Seeking Alpha (Questioning Symantec’s ‘Virtual’ Shareholder Meetings, 9/20/2010) joined CII, CalSTRS, CalPERS, USPX and others in objecting to an all virtual meeting held buy Symantec. This follows up on Ted Allen’s September 16, 2010 article for RiskMetrics, Investors Object to Symantec’s Virtual Annual Meeting, my post of September 7, 2010 (also […]

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Documenting Share Ownership to File Resolutions

Hoping to put an end to the efforts by certain executives to frustrate the ability of shareowners to submit proposals, I joined with John Chevedden and Glyn Holton in providing written advice to Meredith Cross, Director Division of Corporation Finance at the SEC, on a proposed staff legal bulletin interpreting Rule 14a-8(b)(2). Our letter explains […]

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Investment Clubs Get Moxie

BetterInvesting, the nonprofit association serving the retail investor primarily through education and investment clubs, announced a strategic partnership with Moxy Vote. BetterInvesting will promote the use of Moxy Vote’s free online proxy-voting service. According to Kamie Zaracki, CEO of BetterInvesting: We’re excited to work with Moxy Vote. Since 1951, our association has been advocating that […]

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CorpGov News Bites

CalPERS. A report from consultant Wilshire Associates found that activist involvement by CalPERS increased returns at many of  the 142 “Focus List” companies. Prior to the pension’s involvement, the companies’ returns averaged 83.3% below their various benchmarks; afterward they yielded returns 12.7% above the benchmarks. Although the cumulative 12.7% is not as high as past results, their corporate governance program […]

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Rejected No-Action Request Clarifies Required Ownership Evidence

As reported last week by Glyn Holton in the Investor Suffrage News, available through subscription, investors won another round with the SEC’s denial of a no-action letter to News Corp. From that News: You may recall last spring’s Apache vs. Chevedden lawsuit. It was a classic SLAPP (strategic lawsuit against public participation) suit, with Apache […]

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Devon's AGM (Updated)

John Chevedden recently had one of his more common shareowner proposals at Devon Energy (update at bottom): Resolved, Shareholders request that our board take the steps necessary so that each shareholder voting requirement in our charter and bylaws, that calls for a greater than simple majority vote, be changed to a majority of the votes […]

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Update on Virtual Shareowner Meetings

As they have done for the past few years, Intel Corp. hosted a hybrid shareowner meeting today, allowing shareowners to attend in person or via the Internet. This meeting was important because Intel had planned to make it a virtual meeting, hosted exclusively on the Internet. A strong reaction from shareowners prompted Intel to back […]

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Pyrrhic Victory? Apache Delays Shareowner Proposal, Loses Attempt to Require Broker Letters From DTC

March 10, 2010, Press Release from the United States Proxy Exchange (USPX). Shareowners are celebrating a dramatic win in the Apache vs. Chevedden lawsuit, which was decided in an expedited manner by Judge Lee H. Rosenthal in Federal District Court in Houston today. Shareowners were glum when the judge’s decision first arrived. It started by […]

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Who Should Submit Shareowner Proposals?

In Apache v. Chevedden, Apache’s court brief says: “When it comes to shareholder proposals, Apache is the ‘David’ and Chevedden is the ‘Goliath.’” That seems strange coming from a $33 billion market cap company. However, after reading their brief, I agree; the company seems to be at a disadvantage. They don’t seem to know how […]

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Apache vs. Chevedden Takes Dramatic Turn

The drama of a retail investor fending off a sweeping lawsuit by a $33 billion corporation took a dramatic turn today, as the United States Proxy Exchange (USPX) intervened, filing an amicus curiae (friend of the court) brief in Federal District Court in Houston. John Chevedden, a retail investor and champion of shareowner rights, is […]

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USPX to File Amicus Curiae Brief in Apache vs. Chevedden

Yesterday, Judge Lee Rosenthal of the Federal District Court in Houston issued an order  (ApacheOrder) granting the United States Proxy Exchange (USPX) leave to file an amicus curiae (friend of the court) brief in Apache vs. Chevedden. The USPX had petitioned the court for leave on February 16, stating in part: Amicus curiae filings are […]

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Intel Virtual Mtg Out for 2010 But Exploring Future with USPX

Bowing to shareowner concerns, Intel Corp. scrapped plans to hold an exclusively on-line virtual annual meeting in 2010 and is likely to participate in a Fall conference to establish safeguards for the conduct of virtual meetings in the future, the United States Proxy Exchange (USPX) announced today. Background Last Fall, Intel Corp. announced plans to […]

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Co-Filers Wanted on Petition to Eliminate Street Name Registration

As I indicated in my last post (Can We Change Voting Behavior?), I’m working with the United States Proxy Exchange (USPX) on a petition to the SEC to end “street name registration.”  That largely ad hoc system took root under emergency conditions stemming from a paperwork crisis during the 1960s, before networked computers were ubiquitous in trading […]

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Can We Change Voting Behavior?

We Own You!: How technology can help stockholders take control of the corporations they own, Slate.com, 1/12/10.  Eliot Spitzer writes,  “Twitter, text messages, YouTube, and other technology transformed politics in 2008. This success raises a compelling question: Can the same technology awaken the more dormant world of corporate democracy?… Could proxy voting in 2011 generate the […]

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Guest Commentary From Glyn Holton: Emergency at Intel

Intel Corp. recently announced they will no longer hold annual shareholder meetings. Instead, they plan to host shareholder forums, or “virtual shareholder meetings.” In 2000, Delaware enacted legislation allowing corporations to do exactly this. Arrogantly, that state’s legislators granted shareholders no say in the matter, leaving the decision solely to the discretion of corporation’s entrenched […]

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