Key Virgin Media director to step down
# May 17, 12:01 AM by Gavin
William Connors, a key Virgin Media director, has decided to step down following complaints from other shareholders. Sir Richard Branson’s Virgin Group and Franklin Mutual Advisors are concerned about overrepresentation as Connors, along with another board member, worked for a third Virgin Media shareholder in the past.
Connors, is regarded as a key ally of Bill Huff, another board member, having served under him at Huff’s hedge fund company, W. R. Huff Asset Management. Furthermore, another board member, Edwin Banks, is also an ex-employee of Mr Huff. This has lead to complaints from other board members such as Sir Richard Branson’s Virgin Group and Franklin Mutual Advisors about a disproportionate level of representation by Mr Huff, whose stake in Virgin Media stands at 5.4%
Virgin Media have said that Mr Connors, who has served since March 2006, and Mr Banks are eligible to serve, as they qualify under Nasdaq’s listing standards as independent directors. Mr Huff’s representation on the Virgin Media board is expected to come under scrutiny at todays Annual General Meeting, following a board meeting in the US yesterday.
The appointment of interim chairman Jim Mooney, who insists on remaining in the US as opposed to Britain, by Mr Huff, is also expected to come under scrutiny at Virgin Media’s AGM.