Vodafone board weathers shareholder storm

Vodafone's board has been re-elected despite resistance from disgruntled shareholder the Ontario Teachers' Pension Plan (OTPP).
 
But shareholders used the company's recent annual general meeting to express dissatisfaction at the board's handling of the company's affairs.
 
Chairman Sir John Bond, deputy chairman John Buchanan and 10 directors were re-elected to the board by a wide majority, however 2.4 million worth of shares were used to vote against Bond’s reappointment.
 
A similar number opposed Buchanan’s re-election.
 
Pressure to replace board members was led by the OTPP, FT.com said. The body has already called on Vodafone to restructure, and attacked Vodafone for its “disastrous” acquisition record.
 
At the meeting, the OTPP attacked Bond and the board over accusations of “structural and strategic weaknesses,” Interactive Investor said
 
More shareholders joined in with complaints, but ultimately most chose to vote for re-election.
 
Other complaints focused on the long-term decline in Vodafone's share price, as well as the fact that the company is still not able to leverage value from its 45% stake in US operator Verizon Wireless.
 
But CEO Vittorio Colao said the company has no plans to divest its stake in the venture.

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