Nuplex seeks big hike in directors’ fee pool
Chemicals maker Nuplex wants its shareholders to approve a 50% increase in funds available for directors’ fees.
Nuplex, whose corporate governance came under scrutiny over continuous disclosure in late 2008, is seeking to increase the total fee pool per annum from $1 million to $1.5 million.
The company will ask shareholders to vote on the proposal at their annual meeting on November 2.
Nuplex explained in its notice to the meeting that shareholders approved the current level of directors' fees in 2007.
“It is necessary to increase the aggregate limit to cover increases in fees in future,” Nuplex said in its notice of meeting.
The proposed increase would cover rising fees due to inflation as well as market trends in New Zealand and Australia over the next three to five years, the company said.
It would also allow for the appointment of additional directors “should that be decided” and provide for an overlap of directors upon retirement and replacement of directors in accord with the director succession plan.
The Nuplex board currently consists of seven, including independent chairman Rob Aitken, managing director and chief executive Emery Severin and five other independent directors – Barbara Gibson, Michael Wynter, David Jackson, Peter Springford and newly appointed Jeremy Maycock.
At the annual meeting Mr Springford is seeking re-election while Mr Maycock is seeking election having been appointed this month.
Nuplex recently booked a better-than-expected net profit of $66.5 million for the 2011 financial year, up from the $64.2 million in 2010.
The company has grown its footprint in Australia on the back of an acquisition drive originated by former managing director John Hirst.
This February the company settled a dispute with the former Securities Commission following an investigation.
Nuplex agreed to pay more than $3 million in compensation to shareholders who purchased and held shares between December 22, 2008 and February 18, 2009.
The commission alleged Nuplex and some of its directors breached continuous disclosure regulations by failing to disclose a banking covenant breach to the stock exchange when the information first became available in late 2008.