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Business News

Sir Stelios set to vote against easyJet directors

Sir Stelios Haji-Ioannou set the scene for a stormy annual general meeting of easyJet next Thursday as the company's founder saidhe would vote against there-election of a string ofdirectors and its pay report.

The entrepreneur, whose family still controls 38 per cent of the budget airline, is unhappy at levels of executive pay at easyJet as well as plans to buy new aircraft from Airbus as growth has slowed.

Sir Stelios, right, will vote against the re-election of easyJet's chairman, Sir Mike Rake, as well as the non-executives Adele Anderson, Rigas Doganis and Keith Hamill. He is also withholding his vote on the re-election of CarolynMcCall, the chief executive who used to run Guardian Media Group, and her finance director, Chris Kennedy.

The spat has already prompted a trio of institutional shareholders to throw their weight behind the board, which is led by Sir Mike, the former KPMG grandee who also chairs BT.

Standard Life, M&G Investments and Sanderson Asset Management, who collectively own almost 18 per cent of the business, declared last week that they backed the company's pay policy. At issue is an incentive scheme that could deliver shares worth £8m to executives over a three-year period.

EasyGroup, Sir Stelios's holding company, said it wanted to "increase transparency of directors' transactions using company money" and "increase scrutiny and hold people accountable for their actions".