Reinsurance News

R&Q investors picking sides

19th August 2022 - Author: Pete Carvill

One of R&Q’s investors has come out in support of William Spiegel, the executive chairman who has been facing calls for his removal as a director of the company.

randall-quilter-rq-logoSpiegel’s position has been rocked in recent weeks by the calling of Phoenix Asset Management Partners, which owns around 12% of shares in the firm, asking for him to be removed and replaced with R&Q’s founder and former executive chairman Ken Randall. Phoenix cited a deterioration in the performance of the business under Spiegel’s leadership.

However, other firms holding shares in R&Q have come to Spiegel’s defence. The most recent of this is abrdn.

Thomas Moore, senior investment director for UK and European equities at the firm, said: “abrdn PLC manages funds owning approximately 6.2% of the outstanding shares of R&Q Insurance Holdings Ltd. We support the current Executive Chairman, William Spiegel, and believe that the strategy outlined is appropriate to realise the full shareholder value inherent in the Legacy and Program Management divisions.”

He added: “We have not seen a valid argument to justify the distraction which would arise from a change in management, and believe the stability of Spiegel’s leadership is especially important after a year of change.”

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The Scottish firm is not the only one coming out in support of Spiegel. Investment firm Vida Capital, which manages 9.07% of the firm’s outstanding shares, has expressed its support in recent days for the current leadership and strategy of the company.

In a statement, the company, which is a vertically integrated, uncorrelated investment firm specialising in insurance, longevity, structured credit, and private lending, said that it supported Spiegel, the management team, and the Board in their efforts to maximise shareholder value.

It added: “We believe a dramatic change to the strategy or to the executive leadership at this time would be counterproductive and would create a major distraction for the company.”

Earlier in the week, 777 Partners backed insurer Brickell PC Insurance Holdings, which had been set to acquire R&Q earlier this year before the deal was rejected by two shareholders as Brickell argued that R&Q had breached certain obligations, expressed concern about the “recent significant deterioration of the business.”

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