Mia Gardner | 17 Apr 2019
The shares in question belonged to Lee Feldman, the company’s exiting Chairman, and Kenny Alexander, company CEO. The move shook investors confidence in the brand, which resulted in the 20% decline.
As per the FCA (Financial Conduct Authority) regulations, senior shareholders such as the Chairman must get permission to dispose of shares from its CEO, and the CEO must obtain permission from its Chairman. But what if both parties plan to dispose of shares at the same time?
This has been the case with Feldman and Alexander, who authorised each other’s shares sale. Although they did follow regulations, it has been labelled ‘not good practise’ and many are of the opinion that the two should have sought sanction from other senior shareholders.
The unusual situation will call into question many company’s internal policies for situations where both the Chairman and CEO want to sell shares at the same time.
Alexandra pocketed around £13.7 million for his Ladbrokes shares, and Feldman sold three quarters of his stock for £6 million.
Many have viewed the disposal of their company shares as a sign that confidence in the company has diminished. However, Alexander has stated that he would not have sold his shares if he had known the negative affect it would have for investors.
He has been with the company for over a decade, from it’s founding as a seven strong team with a value of just £23 million, to today, CEO of a £3.6 billion gambling giant. His contributions include navigating the company through the acquisition of bwin.party in 2016, and the purchase of Ladbrokes Coral last year.
Today, GVC is one of the biggest gambling and sports betting brands in the world. It employs over 25000 people around the globe, and holds licenses in 20 jurisdictions.
The company’s leading brands include Ladbrokes, Coral, bwin, partypoker and Party Casino. In addition, it is in a joint venture with MGM Resorts to capitalise on the newly regulated US sports betting industry. In total, the company owns 14 successful sport betting brands, 14 online casino brands and supply’s its B2B products to four well known operators around the world.