A victory for the minority

While stockmarket falls dominated press headlines this morning and talk of a depression looms large, in terms of fund news the last week has been “depressingly” quiet.

Well it is summer I suppose. The biggest fund news of the week so far was probably the result of the shareholder vote of the proposed merger of the Foreign & Colonial Property Trust (FCPT) and the Ignis Investments’ UK Commercial Property Trust (UKCPT).

In the past few weeks, several investment trusts analysts came out against the merger and with it needing the nod of 50% of trust’s minority shareholders, the result was always going to be close. In the end it came to just seven basis points, with the votes in favour of the deal coming in just short at 49.93%. It is unusual for shareholders to vote against these things and it leaves the future of the trust under question, with the board already having served notice on F&C’s management of the trust. (article continues below)

F&C Reit continue to manage the trust even though the majority of its larger shareholders supported the merger. It also remains unclear whether or not further merger proposals from Ignis will be forthcoming. The board has stated it will now “consider the future of the company and will consult with its key shareholders”.

Those against the merger all stated it seemed to benefit mostly the larger shareholders, so the vote against marks an important victory for the minority.