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De La Rue and Dunelm braced for a backlash

Face the music: Several companies face deadly shareholder meetings this week amid rows over pay and performance

De La Rue and Dunelm brace for backlash: Multiple companies face deadly shareholder meetings amid pay and performance rows

  • Dunelm braces for shareholder rebellion over boss Nick Wilkinson’s £2.7m salary
  • Link Group also faces concerns over executive pay
  • De La Rue has not performed well since losing his post-Brexit passport printing contract

Several companies are facing deadly shareholder meetings this week amid rows over pay and performance.

Furniture company Dunelm, fund supervisor Link Group and banknote printer De La Rue are preparing for confrontations with investors.

Dunelm, founded in 1979 selling curtains from a stall in Leicester market, is braced for a shareholder rebellion over boss Nick Wilkinson’s £2.7million salary. The furniture chain, which will hold its annual general meeting (AGM) on Wednesday, has been criticized for the ‘excessive’ payment – 120 times what an average employee earns.

Shareholder advisory group Pirc has told investors to vote against the company’s pay report because the pay gap is “unacceptable”.

The opposition comes despite Wilkinson’s £3.8m pay cut. Andrew Speke of the High Pay Center said Dunelm was “deaf”. ‘

The call to vote against is absolutely right,” he said. “The wages of most workers have gone down in real terms.”

Link Group, whose role in the Neil Woodford investment fund scandal earned it multi-million pound fines, is also concerned about executive pay.

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The Australian company, whose general meeting is Wednesday, paid its chief executive Vivek Bhatia more than half a million pounds last year.

Pirc, again, advises shareholders to vote against the pay report because the boss could receive more than 200% of his salary in “incentives”. It comes as Link attempts to sell its UK arm, which was supposed to oversee Woodford’s management of its flagship investment fund.

De La Rue has not performed well since losing the lucrative post-Brexit UK blue passport printing contract in 2018. Today, one of his biggest investors, activist fund Crystal Amber, wants the company to consider a sale to return some money to those who are long-suffering. shareholders.

In an unusual twist, the two companies found themselves embroiled in a spat, with De La Rue accusing Crystal Amber of plotting “market manipulation” and Crystal Amber accusing her beneficiary company of defamation.

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De La Rue called a meeting on Friday to allow investors to vote on Chairman Kevin Loosemore’s future following the company’s third profit warning in a year last week.

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