CALPERS SEEKS CHANGES AT NABORS INDUSTRIES
(The following is a reformatted version of a press release issued by the California Public Employees’ Retirement System and obtained at www.calpers.ca.gov)
Press Release June 3, 2013
CalPERS Urges Change at Nabors Industries
SACRAMENTO, CA - The California Public Employees’ Retirement System (CalPERS) is asking shareholders to support its proposal calling for Nabors Industries (Nabors) to adopt changes to its severance package policy, and to support measures that would require the Board to elect an independent Chair and allow shareholders to nominate directors for election to the Board.
The Pension Fund’s non-binding shareholder resolution seeking changes to the severance package policy, known as Proposal #9, seeks shareholder approval of future severance agreements with senior executives that provide total benefits exceeding 2.99 times the sum of the executive’s base salary plus bonus.
The proposal comes after Nabors’ employment contract with its CEO included a payout worth $100 million upon departure. The CEO later agreed to waive the payout, after years of poor performance, and amid concerns from shareholders and governance groups. Currently, severance packages for senior executives are negotiated by the Board and management, and require no shareholder approval.
Two major proxy advisors, Glass, Lewis & Co. and ISS Proxy Advisory Services, issued analyses supporting the CalPERS proposal.
“Payment for failure is a curse on company performance,” said Anne Simpson, CalPERS Senior Portfolio Manager and Director for Global Governance. “CalPERS wants to ensure long-term alignment between owners and managers. Furthermore, shareholders have already sent a message that they want to be able to nominate directors. Nabors should respect that wish and allow access to the proxy for significant long-term owners.”
CalPERS is also supporting Proposals #7 and #10, asking for the Board to elect an independent Chair and provide proxy access to shareholders, respectively, at the company’s June 4 annual shareholder meeting. Similar proposals won shareholder support at last year’s meeting.
CalPERS will be voting 995,710 shares of Nabors at the meeting.
Nabors is an S&P 500 oil, natural gas and geothermal drilling contractor operating on land throughout the Americas, Middle East, Far East, and Africa. The company also provides many support services for both offshore and onshore oil drilling and for well-servicing operations.
CalPERS is the largest public pension fund in the U.S. with approximately $260 billion in assets. The retirement system administers retirement benefits for more than 1.6 million current and retired California State, public school, and local public agency employees and their families on behalf of more than 3,000 public employers in the state, and health benefits for 1.3 million enrollees. For more information about CalPERS, visit www.calpers.ca.gov.
External Affairs Branch (916) 795-3991 Robert Udall Glazier, Deputy Executive Officer Brad Pacheco, Chief, Office of Public Affairs
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