Offshore oil and gas investor Seafox International has criticised Aberforth International for the reappointment of directors to the board of Gulf Marine Services (GMS), which the investment manager holds a 20% stake in.
GMS's 30 June AGM saw the reappointment to the board of ex-BAE CEO Mike Turner and CFO of Sunny Hill Energy David Blewden, despite the grievances raised by 30% stakeholder Seafox, which had been fighting to see the appointment of its own nominees Hassan Heikal and Hesham Halbouny.
The AGM saw around 59% of shareholders reject the appointments of three directors, as well as the remuneration report, the remuneration policy, bonus plan and LTIP, the executive chairman's share award, and the company's proposal to issue equity and dis-apply pre-emption rights.
GMS raised concerns about voting patterns and "within two hours", according to Seafox, the company had re-appointed the directors.
In the wake of the AGM, chairman of Seafox Heikel criticised Aberforth's role in the reappointment of the directors.
He said: "Aberforth Partners, which holds a 20% stake, voted to support the board at its recent AGM as it has regularly done over five out of the last six years in virtually all matters despite the company's chronic underperformance when compared with its peers.
"We cannot understand why a major shareholder would continually support a board that has proven incapable of delivering sustained growth in shareholder value."
A new vote has been scheduled for 4 August at which Seafox has again filed for Heikal and Halbouny to take up board roles. GMS has urged investors to vote against the motion.
Writing to fellow investors, Seafox has published a statement listing reasons to back its requests, including the dismissal of claims it recently attempted to acquire GMS "well below its true value".
The statement said: "GMS's Board is in urgent need of further director appointments to provide the experience and know how required in order to address its recent poor performance and further deterioration of its financial position."
Aberforth would not comment on individual holdings within clients' portfolios.