Suzlon shareholders must consider change in leadership, says proxy firm

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Citing Suzlon Energy’s continuing weak performance, proxy firm Institutional Investor Advisory Services (IiAS) has advised company shareholders to consider a change in leadership at the wind-turbine maker and vote against a proposal to re-appoint managing director Tulsi Tanti.

Proxy advisory firm IiAS has recommended voting against a pay hike for Mr. Tanti, who is also the founder and chairman of the company, and said the increase in his compensation should be linked to an improvement in Suzlon’s financial performance.

Under Mr. Tanti, “the company’s performance has continued to falter and the company is now under a CDR (corporate debt restructuring) programme”, IiAS said in a report.

“IiAS believes that promoters’ interests will also be served by bringing in new management… Shareholders must consider a change in leadership,” it noted.

Suzlon is seeking approval to re-appoint Mr. Tanti as managing director for three years starting April 1, 2014, and to increase his annual remuneration from Rs. 2 crore to Rs. 3 crore.

These are among the resolutions for which Suzlon sought shareholders’ green signal through a postal ballot, the results of which are to be made public on Thursday.

In its report issued on Wednesday, IiAS said the wind-turbine maker is currently reporting EBITDA (earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortisation) losses and its share price has fallen by about 80 per cent over a three-year period.

Suzlon posted a consolidated net loss of Rs. 1,075.25 crore in the quarter ended December. In the year-ago period, the loss was at Rs. 1,154.53 crore.

In the third quarter of the current financial year, Suzlon’s total income climbed to Rs. 5,052.20 crore from Rs. 4,047.71 crore a year ago.

At the end of December, the group’s order book stood at 5.5 GW (gigawatts), valued at about Rs. 47,393 crore, or $7.7 billion.