ENRC board gets investors backing, shares buybacks blocked

Eurasian Natural Resources Corporation (LON:ENRC), the London-listed giant miner wrestling with a series of accusations of corruption and bribery, disregarded Wednesday a shareholders muted protest aimed to ban the board from selling and buying stocks in the firm.

In the wake of today’s annual meeting, Pirc, the shareholder advisory group, had urged independent shareholders to vote against the re-election of every director but one citing “unjustified bonuses” received by the executive directors given the company’s share price weak performance.

It said it wanted to prevent a “squeeze-out at undervaluation by other interests”.

However during the annual meeting an overwhelmingly majority (94%) voted in favour of the Kazakh mining group’s remuneration report.

Alexander Mashkevich, Alijan Ibragimov and Patokh Chodiev are orchestrating a proposal to take ENRC private, despite having listed the group in London only 5 years ago. On Monday, the Takeover Panel granted them three more weeks to formalize a bid, reported London Business Standard.

ENRC has been in talks with the Serious Fraud Office since 2011 over a series of problems within its Kazakh operations, as well as a subsequent internal inquiry into the company's business in Africa.

Last April, the miner suspended one of its managers in Mozambique, where it has several coal assets over fresh whistleblowing allegations.

The Serious Fraud Office is currently looking into a report that accuses staff of misusing funds to buy a horse farm and guesthouse.