NEWPORT BEACH, Calif.--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Engaged Capital, LLC (“Engaged Capital”), an investment firm specializing in small and mid-cap North American equities and beneficial owner of 550,000 shares of the common stock of Rovi Corporation (“Rovi” or the “Company”) (Nasdaq:ROVI), responded today to Rovi’s announcement of new compensation arrangements for its independent directors.
“After years of receiving outsized compensation at the expense of shareholders, we find it incredibly disingenuous that Rovi’s Board has finally decided to address its excessive director pay practices less than two weeks prior to the Annual Meeting and after both leading proxy advisory firms recommended that shareholders vote on Engaged Capital’s WHITE proxy card,” said Glenn W. Welling, CIO of Engaged Capital.
No one should be fooled by Chairman Ludwick’s claim that director compensation just recently “became outsized relative to [Rovi’s] new peers.” Rather, we firmly believe that director pay has been excessive for years. As noted in our April 23 presentation, compensation received by Rovi’s incumbent directors (over $300,000) in 2014 was ~60% higher than similar sized, mid-cap companies and even ~25% higher than large-cap companies. Given that Rovi announced the divestiture of DivX in late 2013, worked to change its peer group in mid-2014, and finalized its 2015 compensation plan in February, which included no changes to director pay, we find it extremely curious that the Board suddenly realized its new peer group warranted an additional review of Rovi’s director compensation policies.
We believe the announced changes are solely a reaction to our campaign and we seriously question the motivation behind this announcement. Shareholders must ask themselves, was this a proactive corporate governance improvement made by a board aligned with shareholders? Or was this simply a reactive, 11th hour attempt to gain votes in a proxy contest made by an entrenched Board desperately trying to maintain the status quo?
“As noted by both independent proxy advisory firms, ISS and Glass Lewis, the board refuses to hold themselves accountable. This is a further demonstration of why all of Engaged Capital’s nominees are urgently needed in the boardroom to bring a fresh, shareholder-focused perspective,” concluded Mr. Welling.
Rovi shareholders are urged to vote the WHITE proxy card to elect Engaged Capital’s three highly-qualified director candidates, David Lockwood, Raghavendra Rau and Glenn W. Welling, at the May 13, 2015 Annual Meeting of Rovi.
VOTE YOUR WHITE ENGAGED CAPITAL PROXY FOR EACH OF THE ENGAGED CAPITAL NOMINEES TODAY.
If you have any questions, or require assistance with your vote, please contact Morrow & Co., LLC, toll- free at (800) 662-5200, call direct at (203) 658-9400 or email: firstname.lastname@example.org
About Engaged Capital:
Engaged Capital, LLC (“Engaged Capital”) was established in 2012 by a group of professionals with significant experience in activist investing in North America and was seeded by Grosvenor Capital Management, L.P., one of the oldest and largest global alternative investment managers. Engaged Capital is a limited liability company owned by its principals and formed to create long-term shareholder value by bringing an owner’s perspective to the managements and boards of undervalued public companies. Engaged Capital manages both a long-only and long/short North American equity fund. Engaged Capital’s efforts and resources are dedicated to a single investment style, “Constructive Activism” with a focus on delivering superior, long-term, risk-adjusted returns for investors. Engaged Capital is based in Newport Beach, California.