Sports Direct boss Mike Ashley is reported to be facing a shareholder rebellion ahead of the retailer’s upcoming annual meeting in September.
Institutional Shareholder Services (ISS) has joined advisory firms Glass Lewis and Pirc in recommending that investors vote against Ashley’s re-election as a director, The Guardian has reported.
ISS flagged “significant operational and governance concerns” at the retailer, which include its purchase of House of Fraser, an unexpected Belgian tax bill and struggle to find an auditor to replace Grant Thornton.
The report said: “ISS’s policy for UK companies provides for withholding support from directors under extraordinary circumstances for material failures of governance, stewardship, or risk oversight. Recent events at Sports Direct appear to indicate that in this case, all three criteria apply. A vote against the re-election of Mike Ashley is therefore considered appropriate.”