IHC appeals to investors to 'vote for continuity'

A building in Melbourne acquired by IHC in 2014 that was subsequently put under receivership. IHC, which has been facing shareholder revolt as well as scrutiny from an activist investor, will have an extraordinary general meeting next Monday where sh
A building in Melbourne acquired by IHC in 2014 that was subsequently put under receivership. IHC, which has been facing shareholder revolt as well as scrutiny from an activist investor, will have an extraordinary general meeting next Monday where shareholders will vote on whether or not to replace the company's entire board of directors.PHOTO: IHC

Medical property developer International Healthway Corp (IHC), which is facing a shareholder revolt as well as unwanted scrutiny from an activist investor, has appealed to investors to "vote for continuity" and give it more time to shore up its performance.

The move comes ahead of an extraordinary general meeting next Monday where shareholders will vote on whether or not to replace IHC's entire board of directors.

In a statement to the Singapore Exchange yesterday evening, IHC refuted a claim by the requisitioning shareholders that the company's performance is "worrying". It said: "Many of the issues faced by the company surfaced before 2016. The appointments of the present board members were all in 2016."

IHC also noted that "several of the company's lenders have expressed concern over the requisitioning members' move", though it did not detail which lenders it was referring to.

IHC also responded to the open letter from activist investor Quarz Capital Management on Friday that called out the IHC management for "lack of strategic focus and several execution issues" and suggested ways for IHC to boost its poor cash flows and lower debt costs.

IHC said: "The possibilities that Quarz had opined are not new to the board. A number of them are unfortunately academic solutions.

"The board is already working on these possibilities and, where necessary, the appropriate announcements will be made."

The counter closed unchanged at 6.6 cents yesterday.

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on January 19, 2017, with the headline 'IHC appeals to investors to 'vote for continuity''. Print Edition | Subscribe