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Hedge fund sells shares after Vaalco proxy fight ends

Houston Business Journal – A noisy, contentious proxy battle ended quietly Wednesday when shareholders of Vaalco Energy Inc. voted in the company’s chosen slate of board directors.

Houston-based Vaalco (NYSE:EGY) had spent the past three months fending off an attack from a New York hedge fund that was formed in January and built up a substantial position of shares — 4.7 million — on the open market before disclosing its position in March.

Nanes Delorme Partners I LP had proposed its own slate of three directors for election at the meeting and demanded big changes at the exporation and production company, which has most of its holdings in West Africa.

Vaalco had filed a lawsuit against the hedge fund as part of its response to the coup attempt but has dropped the proceedings as part of an agreement cobbled together late in the evening of May 23 to end the dispute. Nanes Delormes in turn agreed to vote in favor of Vaalco’s director nominees.

Proxy advisory firm Glass Lewis & Co. weighed in a day earlier, recommending that shareholders withhold support for Vaalco board nominees W. Russell Scheirman, president and chief financial officer, and Arne Nielsen. The proxy firm said it agreed with many of the corporate governance and stock performance issues raised by Nanes Delormes.

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