Six of nine Conroy Gold directors removed at egm

Resolutions to appoint new directors fail to be passed following procedural obstacle

Professor Richard Conroy, the chairman of Conroy Gold at the company’s egm. Photograph: Cyril Byrne

Professor Richard Conroy, the chairman of Conroy Gold at the company’s egm. Photograph: Cyril Byrne

 

Six out of nine directors of Conroy Gold and Natural Resources have been removed from their position following an extraordinary general meeting of the company.

The egm took place in Dublin on Friday at the behest of minority shareholder Patrick O’Sullivan who, in addition to removing the six directors, hoped to install three new directors to a board reduced in size.

Michael Power, C David Wathen, Louis Maguire, Sorca Conroy, Seamus FitzPatrick and James Jones have been removed from office following the vote.

The company founder, Prof Richard Conroy, will remain on the board alongside Maureen Jones and Prof Garth Earls.

While the six ordinary resolutions to remove directors were ultimately passed by shareholders, the resolutions to appoint new directors were unsuccessful.

A source close to the matter said the final three resolutions were not passed due to a clause under the company’s articles of association requiring prior notification.

Bernard McEvoy, Mr O’Sullivan’s legal adviser, said the company chairman put the resolutions involving the appointment of new directors to a poll after one was demanded. “It was not then open to the chairman to decide that the resolutions weren’t valid,” he said.

Patrick O’Sullivan, the largest single shareholder of Conroy Gold, at the company’s egm. Photograph: Cyril Byrne
Patrick O’Sullivan, the largest single shareholder of Conroy Gold, at the company’s egm. Photograph: Cyril Byrne

Mr McEvoy confirmed that he and Mr O’Sullivan will be writing formally to the board as well as the company’s legal advisers to get the result of the poll on the final three resolutions to be upheld.

Court action

The meeting of shareholders of Conroy Gold and Natural Resources follows a High Court action earlier this week where Mr O’Sullivan told the court he had concerns about corporate governance and remuneration of board members.

Mr O’Sullivan acquired a 28 per cent shareholding in the company in 2009. The firm was established in 1995 by Prof Conroy to find gold deposits in Northern Ireland and northern Finland,

Speaking to The Irish Times after the meeting, Mr O’Sullivan said he had “huge respect and time for Prof Conway” on a personal capacity. But, he noted that the current board isn’t in a position to advance the best interests of the company.

He is hoping that the company will involve people with expertise in the gold exploration industry in order to raise the finances necessary to explore one of its prospects.

“My patience has been tried,” he said, but he added that he took this action as “an absolute last resort”.

One shareholder addressing the meeting said to the board: “Many of the votes for you and the directors are based on logic.” However, he too said the board needed help if it is to raise capital to further explore its current prospect.

“Fundamentally, I do believe in the company and I believe in the resource,” Mr O’Sullivan said.

The price of shares in the mining company have fallen more than 99 per cent in the last seven years from a high of €13 to a low of €0.10. Currently, the stock is trading at €0.31 per share.