Rebel Seafield shareholders set out reasons for uprising

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The Independent Online
REBEL shareholders in Seafield, the Dublin warehousing and property group, yesterday sent a letter to other shareholders explaining why they are trying to replace the group's chairman and a non-executive director with two of their own number, writes Diane Coyle.

The rebels are led by Fidex International Trust and Tony Wilson, a former chairman of Seafield who was ousted by his own board in June 1990. They hold more than 25 per cent of Seafield's shares and have called an extraordinary meeting for 10 June.

Their complaint is that the company's management is responsible for a dismal trading and acquisition performance. Seafield shares were priced at 150p for a rights issue in October 1989 and closed at 15p, down 1/2 p last night.

The shareholders' group is also challenging Seafield's possible reverse takeover by Imari, a private Irish transport and warehousing firm.

The company faced a shareholder rebellion led by Waterglade Properties last October. Waterglade scrapped plans to force an extraordinary meeting and sold its shareholding a few weeks ago.

Brian Chilver, chairman, said: 'Seafield's main problems arose from the acquisition of Charterhall Properties from the principal requisitionist, Fidex and others, at a time when Seafield itself was under the chairmanship of Mr Wilson, who is now seeking re-election to the board.'

Seafield had bought Charterhall, a property developer, from Fidex for Ir pounds 48.2m (pounds 47.7m) in October 1989. It sold it last November for less than Ir pounds 7m. Mr Chilver said the company would be circulating a letter to shareholders on Tuesday, when it is due to report 1993 results.