Firm backs Barnes & Noble investor
NEW YORK — A second proxy firm has weighed in on Barnes & Noble’s proxy fight with one of its largest shareholders, billionaire Ron Burkle, this time favoring Burkle’s slate of directors a week before shareholders meet and vote.
Institutional Shareholders Services Inc. said in a report yesterday that shareholders should vote for Burkle’s slate of three — including Burkle himself — to replace the three directors up for election or reelection Sept. 28.
Last week, another proxy advisory firm, Glass Lewis & Co., recommended voting for Barnes & Noble’s slate of directors, which includes chairman Leonard Riggio.
Burkle launched the proxy fight last month after a judge dismissed a lawsuit by his Yucaipa Cos., which owns about 19 percent of Barnes & Noble shares, over the book seller’s shareholder rights plan, known as a “poison pill.’’
The plan limits individual stakes in the company to 20 percent. Burkle also said he would appeal the dismissal. Burkle has said he doesn’t want to take over the company but to give shareholders a “voice.’’
Barnes & Noble shares rose 31 cents to $16.19.