Wednesday, November 16, 2011

#Pressreform #Leverson : Vote James Murdoch Off AGM' – Pirc

Activist investor group Pirc advises BSkyB shareholders to vote James Murdoch and three other directors off broadcasters' board
James Murdoch giving evidence to the select committee inquiry into phone-hacking. Photograph: PA
The pressure on James Murdoch to step down as chairman of BSkyB after becoming engulfed in the phone-hacking inquiry intensified tonight as a collection of shareholder groups and investors emerged as a powerful protest lobby.

Pensions & Investment Research Consultants (Pirc), the investor activist group, has advised shareholders to vote against his re-appointment at the annual general meeting on 29 November. Those concerns were mirrored by US corporate governance experts Glass Lewis, who warned that given Murdoch's role "in the News of the World [phone-hacking] matter, we are highly sceptical of [his] ability to adequately act in shareholders' interests".

The moves follow similar advice from the Association of British Insurers. Meanwhile, s ome of BSkyB's best known investors are preparing to vote against Murdoch's re-election. Aviva Investors and Co-operative Asset Management, which own small stakes, are expected to maintain their previous opposition.
Murdoch's involvement in the ongoing investigation into phone-hacking saw him hauled in front of a parliamentary select committee for a second time last week.