Gabelli Merger Plus+ Trust Accelerates Streamlining of Board

LONDON--()--In an effort to continue to drive shareholder value, the Board of Gabelli Merger Plus+ Trust Plc(the “Company”; “GMP”) continues to focus on building its independent team of expert non-executive directors.

In 2018, Director Paolo Vicinelli retired from the Board and did not stand for reelection at the Company’s AGM. Mr. Vicinelli is based in New York and is a portfolio manager at Gabelli. He was replaced by Mr. Alex Hammond-Chambers who was Vice Chairman of Gabelli Asset Management (UK) Ltd. Mr. Hammond-Chambers is based in Edinburgh. Today the Company announced that Mr. Hammond-Chambers has retired. We thank him for his service in GMP’s earliest years. In addition, Mr. Kuni Nakamura has announced his retirement from the Board. Mr. Nakamura is a director with Gabelli Funds and is based in New York.

We thank both of these professionals for their service during this initial period of GMP in the UK and for the mid-summer timing to allow for a smooth transition into the year end and the Company’s AGM soon in the 4th Quarter. The Company just concluded its second year of operation on 30 June 2019 and will release its results in due course.

As many shareholders and market participants are aware, the Company was originally forming itself as a Luxembourg vehicle and instead shifted to a UK domicile and ultimate listing on the Specialist Fund Segment of the London Stock Exchange and The International Stock Exchange in July of 2017.

The Company’s remaining Board, an independent majority, is robust and remains well positioned to continue to serve all shareholders.

The Company’s Board members include: Mr. Marco Bianconi – Chairman of the Audit Committee; Mr. John Birch – Chairman of the Management Engagement and Conflicts Committee; Mr. Marc Gabelli – the Company’s Chairman and Chairman of the Nomination Committee; and Mr. Yuji Sugimoto; Further streamlining since the IPO, the company is privileged to have added two UK based experts with the later appointments of Mr. John Newlands and Mr. James Wedderburn. Mr. Newlands and Mr. Wedderburn offer shareholders a broad knowledge of the UK investment trust landscape.

GMP’s objectives are to compound and preserve wealth over time, while remaining non-correlated to the broad markets. The Board of Directors continue to serve all stakeholders to guide the implementation of the Company’s Investment Objective and Policy. The Board reiterates the following attributes and opportunities:

  • A 5% Annual Dividend Paid Quarterly
  • Annual Capital Gains and Growth Potential
  • Access to a leading global merger investing manager
  • Buyback consideration at discounts in excess of 7.5 per cent
  • USD denomination and trading
  • Loyalty Share after 5 years of continuous ownership
  • Ability to initiate Secondary Offerings (TAP Issuances)
  • Significant Gabelli investment commitment

Gabelli Funds, LLC (the “Portfolio Manager”) highlights the continued strength in M&A. 2018 capped off $4 trillion in deal activity with the first half of 2019 recording over $2 trillion – the 3rd largest opening half on record, since 1980 when the records began as tabulated by Thomson Reuters.

“We are still seeing attractive opportunities and we expect continued M&A activity with robust balance sheets growing cash reserves, open debt markets, and companies looking for M&A as a means to stimulate growth particularly in the slow growth or even no growth environments globally. We expect that future deal activity will provide further prospects to generate returns, non-correlate to the broader equity and fixed income markets,” said Willis Brucker, a member of the portfolio management team.

The Portfolio Manager and its affiliates have invested in mergers since 1977 and created the Gabelli Group's first dedicated announced merger fund over 34 years ago in 1985. Its merger performance has grown client assets at an annualised rate of 10.4 per cent gross and 7.4 per cent net since inception of the dedicated merger portfolios in 1985, through 30 June 2019.

GAMCO Investors Inc., through its subsidiaries, manages private advisory accounts (GAMCO Asset Management Inc.), mutual funds and closed-end funds (Gabelli Funds, LLC). Gabelli has operated in London for more than nineteen years under its division GAMCO UK. As of 31 March, 2019, GAMCO had $37.3 billion in assets under management.

This press release is not an offer to sell or the solicitation of an offer to buy any securities.

PAST PERFORMANCE IS NOT GUARANTEE OF FUTURE RESULTS.

SPECIAL NOTE REGARDING FORWARD-LOOKING INFORMATION Our disclosure and analysis in this press release may contain some forward-looking statements. Forward looking statements give our current expectations or forecasts of future events. In particular, these include statements relating to future actions, future performance and financial results. Although we believe that we are basing our expectations and beliefs on reasonable assumptions within the bounds of what we currently know about our business and operations, there can be no assurance that our actual results will not differ materially from what we expect or believe.“). Copies of the Prospectus will, following publication, be available for non-US investors only from the Company’s registered office.

Important Notice

The contents of this announcement, which has been prepared by and is the sole responsibility of GAMCO Asset Management (UK) Limited, have been approved by GAMCO Asset Management (UK) Limited solely for the purposes of section 21(2)(b) of the Financial Services and Markets Act 2000 (as amended).

The information contained in this announcement is for background purposes only and does not purport to be full or complete. No reliance may or should be placed by any person for any purpose whatsoever on the information contained in this announcement or on its completeness, accuracy or fairness. The information in this announcement is subject to change.

This announcement does not constitute or form part of any offer or invitation to sell or issue, or any solicitation of any offer to purchase or subscribe for any shares or any other securities nor shall it (or any part of it) or the fact of its distribution, form the basis of, or be relied on in connection with, any contract therefor. The placing of the shares and the distribution of this announcement and other information in connection with placement and this announcement in certain jurisdictions may be restricted by law and persons into whose possession any document or other information referred to herein comes should inform themselves about, and observe, any such restrictions. Any failure to comply with these restrictions may constitute a violation of the securities laws of any such jurisdiction.

In particular, neither this announcement, the publication in which it is contained nor any copy of it may be made or transmitted in to the United States of America (including its territories or possessions, any state of the United States of America and the District of Columbia) (the “United States”) and this announcement does not constitute an offer for sale of, or a solicitation to purchase or subscribe for any securities in the United States. The securities referred to herein have not been and will not be registered under the applicable securities laws of the United States and, subject to certain exceptions, may not be offered or sold within the United States. There will be no public offering of the securities in the United States. Neither this announcement, the publication in which it is contained nor any copy of it may be taken, transmitted or distributed, directly or indirectly, into Canada, Japan, Australia or South Africa or to any persons in any of those jurisdictions or any other jurisdictions where to do so would constitute a violation of the relevant laws of such jurisdiction.

Contacts

For Information:
GMP Investor Relations
Tel UK: +44 (0)203 206 2100
Tel US: +1 914 921 5135
Email: GMPAssist@gabelli.com

Contacts

For Information:
GMP Investor Relations
Tel UK: +44 (0)203 206 2100
Tel US: +1 914 921 5135
Email: GMPAssist@gabelli.com