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Proxy Advisers Back Toshiba Board Slate, Including Activists

·1-min read

(Bloomberg) -- Two influential proxy advisers recommended that stock owners vote to elect all director candidates proposed by Toshiba Corp.’s board at the upcoming annual meeting, including two representatives of the company’s activist investors.

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Investors should vote in favor of the election of Eijiro Imai and Nabeel Bhanji, who hail from activist shareholders Farallon Capital Management and Elliott Management Corp., Institutional Shareholder Services Inc. and Glass Lewis & Co. said in separate reports. Neither person’s presence on the board can be considered detrimental, ISS said.

The recommendations come after Toshiba external board member Mariko Watahiki spoke out publicly against appointing representatives of activist investors as directors, saying that if they were appointed, activists would take up too much of the board.

The reports increase the chances that the director candidates from activist shareholders will be appointed. That, in turn, may also raise the likelihood of a sale and privatization of the Japanese industrial giant. Toshiba has received eight buyout offers and two proposals for capital and business alliances as it carries out a process to seek strategic options for its future.

Toshiba’s annual general shareholder meeting is scheduled for June 28.

(Updates throughout with Glass Lewis report)

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