RENO, Nev.--(BUSINESS WIRE)--UNITE HERE announced today that shareholders of Eldorado Resorts, Inc. [NASDAQ: ERI] voted in favor of five non-binding shareholder rights proposals during the company’s annual shareholder meeting in Reno, Nevada on June 19, 2019. According to proxies prepared by Broadridge Financial Solutions, Inc., including those solicited and delivered by UNITE HERE, shareholders overwhelmingly supported UNITE HERE’s proposals to improve Eldorado’s corporate governance.
Proposal 5 and 6 urged Eldorado Resorts to opt out of little-known Nevada anti-takeover statutes that limit business combinations with large shareholders as well as voting rights of large shareholders. These statutes are commonly known as “control share acquisition” and “freeze-out” statutes.i Proposals 7 and 8 urged the company not to adopt other anti-takeover measures like poison pills or supermajority voting requirements if Eldorado opts out of the Nevada statutes. Proposal 9 recommends Eldorado implement a majority vote standard for uncontested director elections – a practice that many public companies have already adopted.
Preliminary results, based on the Broadridge proxies delivered at the meeting, show that at least 42,057,886 shares—or 63.6% of shares voting—voted FOR each of UNITE HERE’s five resolutions, with support for Proposals 8 and 9 above 70%. Less than 23,742,971 shares—or 35.9%—voted AGAINST each of them. 77,442,318 shares were outstanding and eligible to vote, according to the company’s proxy statement. Eldorado did not announce vote results at the meeting, saying it would release certified results in the near future.
“Given such a strong vote for these proposals, we urge Eldorado to implement the will of its shareholders as soon as practicable,” says Courtney Alexander, Deputy Director of Research at UNITE HERE. “Takeover protections like the Nevada statutes are out of step with governance best practices, especially in a period of sustained merger activity like we are seeing in the gaming industry.”
Eldorado Resorts has increased its footprint in the gaming industry rapidly in recent years, and now owns 26 casinos in North America.
i See ISS Proxy Analysis & Benchmark Policy Voting Recommendations, Eldorado Resorts Inc., June 4, 2019, p. 24.