Proxy Contest At CU-Convert Heads ToCourt
CRANFORD, N.J. - (02/09/06) A Wall Street investmentfirms proxy contest to oust two long-time directors on theboard of converted credit union Synergy Financial will be heard instate court next week, the investment group announced Wednesday. PLCapital, which has acquired a 9.9% stake in the ex-credit union, isasking the Union County Superior Court to order management of thesavings bank, once called Synergy FCU, to turn over a shareholderslist so that the investment group can solicit proxies in its bid toreplace the board incumbents. The group, which has waged similarproxy contests at other savings banks, wants Synergy Financial touse $20 million of its $95 million capital to accelerate its stockbuybacks or take other measures to pay out sharehodlers. AlsoWednesday, Synergy Financial reported that it had miscalculated thestock holdings in its original proxy statement disclosed to theSecurities and Exchange Commission, and the banks employeestock ownership plan actually owns an 8.7% stake of the shares, notthe 7.3% reported just last week. Since the banks directorscontrol the ESOP votes that gives them 18.2% of the shares in theimpending proxy contest. Management has nominated three long-timeincumbents to vacancies on the board: President and CEO John Fiore,Nancy Davis and Phil Scott, all of whom helped engineer the 1999conversion from credit union to bank. PL Capital hopes the twocandidates it has nominated will oust two of the oldguard.