Magellan Financial Group (MFG) 2015 AGM Report

Company/ASX Code : Magellan Financial Group Limited (MFG)
Venue :
Sofitel Sydney Wentworth Hotel Sydney, New South Wales
Monitor : Mr Peter Metcalf
AGM Details / NoM : Friday 16th October, 2015
# of Attendees : 74 shareholders plus 27 visitors
# Holdings represented by ASA : 63
Value of Proxies : $4.2 million
# Shares Represented by ASA : 200,000
Market Capitalisation : $3.4 billion

Upbeat mood and investing for the future

This year we attracted far greater support from members than last year with holdings represented rising to 63 from 20.

The meeting opened with a short address by Chairman Brett Cairns, followed by a lengthy but interesting presentation by CEO Hamish Douglass. He allowed an equally lengthy Q&A session. All up the meeting was very upbeat about the future despite no guidance being provided to the meeting.

The CEO said that the company would invest heavily in people and systems in 2016 and that employee expenses would increase by up to 35% in 2016. He re-affirmed the dividend policy which is to distribute 75% of the profit arising from the funds management business. Retained earnings would continue to be ploughed into the company’s investment portfolio which at $283 million (including cash of $94 million) virtually provides a dollar for dollar backing to the company’s net equity of $303 million.

The formal business was confined to two resolutions: the re-election of a director, Paul Lewis and the adoption of the remuneration report. Both were passed with votes in excess of 99% and we supported both. We questioned the Chairman about safeguards that have been introduced at the board level to manage the transition of the Chairman to an executive role. We were told that a lead independent director has been appointed and that all executive directors have been removed from the two board committees.