Activist pushes for Purplebricks chairman Paul Pindar to go after building up a 4% stake in the online estate agent
An activist investor who has built up a 4 per cent stake in troubled Purplebricks could push for an emergency meeting to force out the chairman if he does not stand down.
Lecram Holdings, an investment vehicle for investor Adam Smith, argued that ‘urgent action is now essential to stabilise the [online estate agent] and restore its credibility within the investment community’.
A letter to chairman Paul Pindar accused him of presiding over a ‘highly unsatisfactory performance’ which has seen the share price plunge by 97 per cent from nearly 514p in 2017 to just under 15p on Friday.
Lecram Holdings, an investment vehicle for Adam Smith, argued that ‘urgent action is now essential to stabilise Purplebricks and restore its credibility within the investment community’
Shares climbed 2.3 per cent, or 0.34p, to 15.14p yesterday after the disclosure of Lecram’s stake.
If the holding rises to at least 5 per cent, Smith will be able to call an extraordinary general meeting.
Lecram said it would if necessary ‘use the statutory and regulatory mechanisms available to seek the support of shareholders for resolutions which we intend to lay before them in due course’.
A Purplebricks spokesman said: ‘We sought to meet with Lecram Holdings to discuss their concerns. They declined.
‘It’s disappointing that they chose to go to the media rather than engage with us.’
The spokesman said the company had implemented a number of initiatives to turn the firm around.
Purplebricks’s next full-year figures have been delayed until August with the company pointing to an underlying loss of £8.8million.
Earnings have been dented by claims related to failings in how it dealt with tenants in its lettings business – an issue that cost the company £3.6million.