Duker rejects calls to resign as BDA head

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The Independent Online
BRIAN DUKER yesterday vowed to fight against seemingly insurmountable odds to hold on to his job as chief executive of BDA, the property and investment company he founded 21 years ago, writes John Shepherd.

'I have nothing to resign for,' he said in reply to calls for his resignation from two non-executive directors and several institutional shareholders collectively owning 51.3 per cent of BDA.

BDA, an acronym for Brian Duker Associates, has lost its way, according to Richard Wollenberg and Nigel Jamieson - the two non-executives spearheading the boardroom rebellion.

'We have tried to resolve this matter at board level, but he has been unreasonable even though shareholders take the same view as us,' Mr Wollenberg said. Mr Duker, he added, 'lacked the ability to take the company forward'.

The two non-executives were drafted in four years ago at the behest of big shareholders who had to fund a pounds 2m rescue rights issue. The big anti-Duker shareholders include Postel, Fidelity, Barings and Gartmore.

Mr Duker said the campaign was a vendetta by the non-executives. 'Jamieson has been away in France for three years and has had very little to do with the company.'

BDA turned round from losses of pounds 1.16m to profits of pounds 152,000 before tax in the year to January.

Mr Duker was recently awarded a fresh three-year contract, with a pounds 70,000 salary. With his family, he controls nearly 25 per cent of BDA, valued at pounds 4m on yesterday's share price of 23p, up 0.5p. A proposal for his resignation will be tabled at an extraordinary meeting, the date for which has yet to be decided.

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