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P&G continues to review vote tally as Peltz awaits board seat

Posted by: Admin | Posted on: November 22nd, 2017 | 0 Comments

(Reuters) – Procter Gamble Co (PG.N) is still reviewing a tally of shareholder votes cast at its annual meeting more than a month ago, after a fierce proxy contest narrowly handed activist investor Nelson Peltz a board seat.

The consumer products company said on Wednesday it has not yet decided to launch a formal challenge to the results, which are still preliminary, but is reviewing a count performed by IVS Associates Inc to make sure it is accurate. In response, Peltz’s firm, Trian Fund Management, said it was disappointed that PG continues to question the outcome, which handed him a victory with a margin of just 0.0016 percent of shares outstanding.

“Regardless of how they voted, PG shareholders should be concerned that PG has opted to waste further time and shareholder money contesting the official tabulation of the independent Inspector,” Trian said in a statement. Trian asked PG to reconsider its decision to review and immediately give Peltz a seat on the company’s board.

Peltz launched his war against PG management in July, criticizing the company’s lagging stock price and railing against its “suffocating bureaucracy.” From then through Tuesday’s close, PG shares have risen 1.9 percent.

Immediately after its annual meeting in mid-October, PG said it had beat Peltz by a slim margin, but IVS’s tally, released a week ago, showed otherwise.

PG, whose brands include Tide laundry detergent, Crest toothpaste and Pampers disposable diapers, said it was pushing to get a final certified report from the Independent Inspector of Elections as quickly as possible.

Typically during such reviews, lawyers from both sides vet the counting process performed by an independent third-party. If the outcome does not go its way, PG can launch a formal challenge, though it did not say whether it plans to do so.

Additional reporting by Uday Sampath in Bengaluru; Writing by Lauren Tara LaCapra; Editing by Bernard Orr and David Gregorio

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