Chairmen oppose LucasVarity move

LucasVarity’s plans to seek a listing on the New York stock exchange were dealt another blow last week after two former chairmen announced their opposition. Sir Brian Pearse, who stepped down last May, and his predecessor Sir Anthony Gill, both plan to vote against the move, announced by chief executive Victor Rice. Rice’s plans alarmed […]

LucasVarity’s plans to seek a listing on the New York stock exchange were dealt another blow last week after two former chairmen announced their opposition.

Sir Brian Pearse, who stepped down last May, and his predecessor Sir Anthony Gill, both plan to vote against the move, announced by chief executive Victor Rice.

Rice’s plans alarmed institutional investors, who felt they would lose out.

Pearse revealed that the merger in 1996 of Varity Corporation with Lucas Industries would never have been approved by the Lucas board if the directors had thought it would switch its domicile to the US.

Pearse added that with UK investors forced to sell in a still depressed market, they would lose out substantially.

LucasVarity insisted that Pearse had agreed with the plans at three board meetings a claim he rejects.

Rice cited the greater cost of raising capital in the UK and the low rating of engineering stocks in London as reasons for the move.