Lone Star Value Questions Antares Energy's Second Trading Halt In A Month And
Demands Details About New Announced Unsolicited Bid
NEW YORK, July 18, 2014
NEW YORK, July 18, 2014 /PRNewswire/ --Lone Star Value Investors, LP today
raised serious concerns over what it believes is another incoherent and
apparently manipulative decision of Antares Energy Limited (ASX: AZZ) (AZZEF)
to seek yet another abrupt trading halt of Antares' shares due to Antares'
announcement it has received a second unsolicited bid this month. Antares'
timing is questionable, coming right before the 22 July General Meeting where
Lone Star Value is seeking the election of five independent, highly-qualified
director candidates and the removal of two employee directors from the Board.
Recently, both leading proxy advisory firms, Institutional Shareholder
Services (ISS) and Glass Lewis & Co, supported Lone Star Value's campaign to
revitalise the Board of Antares.
Yesterday, Antares sought a second trading halt in less than a month, claiming
it received yet another unsolicited bid. Antares shareholders have yet to
hear any specifics on the first bid announced by CEO James Cruickshank on 7
July. Importantly, Antares' second announcement states that a bid "has been
made." If so, a trading halt is inappropriate. A "made" bid is not an
incomplete bid that would justify a halt in trading. This second trading halt
will last until 21 July, a day after the record date for the General Meeting,
unless Antares announces details of this second bid even as it has failed to
provide information about the first bid. A similar path was followed earlier
this year when Antares did not provide any information on its previous failed
asset sale in February. The effect of Antares' actions in halting trading is
to freeze the shareholder base by not allowing shareholders to trade the stock
in the last days before the 22 July General Meeting.
Jeff Eberwein of Lone Star Value commented, "Antares' shareholders are growing
increasingly puzzled by the strategically incoherent actions of CEO James
Cruickshank and the rest of the Board. We are growing more concerned that the
Antares Board is trying to muddy the waters through any and every conceivable
tactic before the election results at Tuesday's general meeting."
Lone Star Value believes it is time Antares' Board discloses to shareholders
the specifics of any bids whether for the assets or the whole company. In the
absence of any colour from the Board, Lone Star Value is sceptical that there
is any real interest in acquiring Antares. Contrarily, Lone Star Value has
serious concerns that on the heels of ISS and Glass Lewis support for Lone
Star Value's nominees, the Board seems to be resorting to desperate tactics
attempting to divert attention from the serious issues that plague the Board
and management, including concerns about possible trading violations by
directors Cruickshank and Shoemaker. It appears as if the Antares Board is
attempting to toy with shareholders with the promise of a possible whole
monetisation of company assets in an attempt to remain in office as Board
members. Lone Star Value believes Antares' shareholders are smarter than
this, and the poorly-run, failed asset sale earlier this year dilutes the
validity of both purported offers of interest to acquire either Antares'
shares as a whole or substantially all of its assets. Lone Star Value further
believes a lack of proper stewardship in the months leading up to the General
Meeting are an extension of their already poor track record, and that this
Board must be overhauled to succeed in maximising shareholder value.
Mr. Eberwein concluded, "If there is a qualified buyer for Antares' assets,
then a stronger and independent Board will run an auction process to sell all
or part of the company's assets to the highest bidder, as well as disclose to
investors the particulars of any sale process and potential bidders. Lone
Star Value's director candidates have the experience to run a robust auction
and are much better positioned to maximise value for all shareholders than the
incumbent Board, as well as protect shareholder interests if there are indeed
Lone Star Value urges all Antares shareholders to read carefully the materials
that Lone Star Value has mailed and may continue to mail to them as those
materials contain important information. Lone Star Value called on all
Antares shareholders to vote on its blue and white proxy card to improve the
Board of Antares.
For further information please visit our website, www.antaresvalue.com.au, or
call our shareholder information line, 1300 889 468 (from within Australia) or
+61 2 8022 7902 (from outside Australia).
Media enquiries please contact:
John Hurst – Cannings Corporate Communications
+61 418 708 663
Lone Star Value Management
SOURCE Lone Star Value Investors, LP
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