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    FGP   GB0003452173

FIRSTGROUP PLC

(FGP)
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FirstGroup : Coast Capital launches bid to oust First Group boss

07/26/2021 | 04:41am EDT

Coast Capital has this morning reignited its ongoing battle with First Group by calling for the resignation of the FTSE 250 firm’s chief executive Matthew Gregory, along with two other board members.

The New York-based firm, which owns about 14 per cent of First Group, has been locked in a series of skirmishes with the company for years.

Today, it said that Gregory, who became chief executive in 2018, should “resign and be replaced by a CEO of industry competency, as soon as possible”.

Coast Capital added that board members Julia Steyn and Warwick Brady should also tender their resignations.

It said that Brady’s eight year tenure has “had no positive material impact on the company”.

The attack comes after First Group sold its US assets to Scandinavian fund EQT, despite fierce opposition from Coast.

Although it had long pushed for the firm to sell First Transit and First Student, it said that the deal was a “most imprudent business decision”. 

Coast was particularly critical of Steyn’s role in the sale, saying she “consistently turned a blind eye to the board’s fiduciary shortcomings and breaches and has demonstrated no independence of thought”.

“We note that Ms. Steyn did not vocally advocate the securing of a fairness opinion before voting to sell FGP’s prized North American assets at a discount to book value.

“As a result, there was a decline in share value. Furthermore, the disposal of North American operations means that her background is no longer required by First Group, and it would be prudent to replace her with an expert in UK transportation.”

A First Group spokesperson said: “The successful sale of First Student and First Transit achieved a full strategic value that looks beyond the pandemic.

“The transaction, now approved by a majority of shareholders, enables the Group to return £500m of value to all shareholders, address its long-standing liabilities and make a substantial contribution to the pension scheme deficits. 

“We consistently engage on a variety of topics with all our major shareholders. We have carefully considered Coast Capital’s various outline and initial ideas for the business over time.”

The post Coast Capital launches bid to oust First Group boss appeared first on CityAM.

© City AM, source Newspaper

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Analyst Recommendations on FIRSTGROUP PLC
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Financials
Sales 2022 5 710 M 7 805 M 7 805 M
Net income 2022 2,64 M 3,61 M 3,61 M
Net Debt 2022 1 625 M 2 221 M 2 221 M
P/E ratio 2022 413x
Yield 2022 7,38%
Capitalization 1 108 M 1 514 M 1 514 M
EV / Sales 2022 0,48x
EV / Sales 2023 0,45x
Nbr of Employees 100 807
Free-Float 98,1%
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Technical analysis trends FIRSTGROUP PLC
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TrendsNeutralNeutralBullish
Income Statement Evolution
Consensus
Sell
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Mean consensus OUTPERFORM
Number of Analysts 8
Last Close Price 91,75 GBX
Average target price 92,00 GBX
Spread / Average Target 0,27%
EPS Revisions
Managers and Directors
Ryan Dirk Mangold Chief Financial Officer & Executive Director
David Robert Martin Executive Chairman
Warwick Brady Independent Non-Executive Director
David Robbie Senior Independent Non-Executive Director
Julia Steyn Independent Non-Executive Director
Sector and Competitors