Investors seek Vodafone restructuring

7 Jun 2007

According to the Financial Times, John Mayo, the former deputy chief executive of Marconi, is backing a group of investors who are seeking to restructure Vodafone and unlock up to GBP38 billion (USD75.8 billion) of value in the wireless group. Efficient Capital Structures, an investment group backed by Beehive Capital, Mr Mayo’s investment fund, has written to Vodafone asking for a series of resolutions to be put to next month’s AGM. One of the resolutions it has proposed seeks to gear up Vodafone’s balance sheet by issuing GBP34 billion of bonds and create a security with direct interest in Verizon Wireless, Vodafone’s 45%-owned US joint venture. Glenn Cooper, chairman of ECS, said ‘Vodafone’s share price has underperformed the FTSE 100 over the past five years by 28%. A major reason for this is Vodafone’s inefficient capital structure. Together, these proposals can be executed in an efficient manner and we estimate they would release between GBP17 billion and GBP38 billion of shareholder value.’ Mr Mayo said the move was not aggressive to the management or the board. ‘The proposal is simply to improve the capital structure,’ he said.

United Kingdom, Vodafone Group