CLEVELAND (April 19, 2011)—A proxy fight is on again at Myers Industries Inc.
Myers said its board of directors has sent a letter urging its shareholders to vote in favor of the board's director nominees for election at the company's April 29 annual meeting.
The diversified manufacturing and distribution company said it also “strongly urges” shareholders to discard the proxy card sent by Gamco Asset Management Inc., one of its largest shareholders, to get Gamco's own two nominees elected to the board.
In its letter, Myers notes that Gamco in each of the last two years has tried to elect its own director candidates to the board, but has failed to do so.
“Despite Gamco's futile attempts to gain shareholder support for its director nominees at the past two annual meetings, it again has proposed an alternative slate of candidates without presenting any valid arguments about why its nominees might be better qualified than the Board-recommended slate, or what alternative strategies the company might pursue to create additional value for shareholders,” Myers stated in its letter.
Myers said it offered to include a Gamco nominee on the slate of directors up for election at the latest annual meeting because of Gamco's position as a significant shareholder “and to avoid the expense and distraction of a proxy fight.” The letter states Gamco initially accepted that offer, “then days later reneged on the agreement.”
“Since that time, Gamco has not communicated any suggestions or concerns,” Myers letter states.
The letter is signed by Richard P. Johnson, Myers chairman, and John C. Orr, the company's president and CEO.