Press release from Business Wire
Audley Capital Highlights Superior Qualifications of Its Director Nominees against Certain Current Walter Energy Board Members
<p class='bwalignc'> <b>Believes Audley Capital's Director Nominees Possess Needed Industry and Capital Markets Experience</b> </p>
Thursday, April 18, 2013
Audley Capital Highlights Superior Qualifications of Its Director Nominees against Certain Current Walter Energy Board Members11:41 EDT Thursday, April 18, 2013
NEW YORK (Business Wire) -- Audley Capital Advisors LLP (including certain related funds and investment vehicles, “Audley Capital”) today reiterated the overall strength of its five highly-qualified and experienced nominees for election to the Board of Directors of Walter Energy, Inc. (NYSE: WLT) (TSX: WLT) (“Walter Energy” or “the Company”) at the Company's upcoming 2013 Annual Meeting of Stockholders on April 25, 2013.
Julian Treger, Managing Partner of Audley Capital Advisors, said, “We believe that the Board has been dominated for too long by a clique of long-time directors who have not worked in the best interest of stockholders. At this most critical time in Walter Energy's history, we believe that there is a substantial lack of mining and public market experience among the current Board members. With a significant leveraged bet on met coal price recovery, we think the Board has put the Company in an extremely precarious position. Met coal pricing continues to be under pressure and the Company may be forced later this year to seek working capital. Left to what we see as the continued poor decision-making by the current Board, we believe stockholders will pay the price.”
Added Treger, “As we have said since the beginning of our election campaign, one of the initiatives our nominees would pursue is the disposition of non-core assets and other strategic alternatives. They would work to avoid significant stockholder dilution and seek the means to shore up working capital to maintain and invest in assets that have a superior production and cost profile. These are hard decisions that require experience to construct and skill to execute. Our nominees stand ready to support Walter Energy and work with a reconstituted Board to protect Walter Energy's value and shape it for the future.”
Audley Capital recommends that stockholders vote against the following five directors at the next Annual Meeting of Stockholders:
1) Mr. Michael T. Tokarz
2) Mr. Jerry W. Kolb
3) Mr. Joseph B. Leonard
4) Mr. Bernard G. Rethore
5) Mr. A.J. Wagner
Added Treger, “We believe these individuals have been on the Board for too long, with an average tenure of 12 years, and lack relevant mining experience. Furthermore, four of these five directors are members of a group of interlocking directors with Mueller Water Products, Inc., including Mr. Tokarz who has served on the Walter Energy Board for 26 years, and in our view lack a diversity of independent views. We urge stockholders to support change and vote the gold proxy to elect Audley Capital's director nominees.”
Audley Capital is providing stockholders with an opportunity to elect five sophisticated and experienced new Board members that will bring significant and, in our view, necessary mining and public company experience to the Walter Energy Board.
Audley Capital's director nominees are:
|Lawrence Clark, Jr.||
Audley Capital urges stockholders to vote FOR its five director nominees by immediately completing and returning the GOLD proxy card or by submitting proxies by telephone or through the Internet. Investors that have any questions or need assistance voting their shares should call Audley Capital's proxy solicitor, Okapi Partners LLC, at (877) 208-8903.
Further information regarding the director nominees and other persons who may be deemed participants, and other matters, are set forth in a definitive proxy statement filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission (“SEC”). SHAREHOLDERS OF THE COMPANY ARE STRONGLY ADVISED TO READ THAT PROXY STATEMENT, BECAUSE IT INCLUDES IMPORTANT INFORMATION. THE PROXY STATEMENT IS BEING SENT TO SHAREHOLDERS BY OR ON BEHALF OF PARTICIPANTS, AND IS ALSO AVAILABLE AT NO CHARGE ON THE SEC'S WEBSITE AT http://www.sec.gov.
Audley Capital Advisors LLP
Julian Treger, Managing Partner
Okapi Partners LLC
Bruce Goldfarb/Charles Garske/Patrick McHugh
Sard Verbinnen & Co
Dan Gagnier/Brian Shiver