BOSTON (Reuters) – Proxy advisory firms Glass Lewis and Institutional Shareholders Services urged investors in healthcare real estate trust Ventas Inc to back management’s director candidates and reject activist investment firm Land & Buildings’ effort to win one board seat.
Land & Buildings’ founder Jonathan Litt nominated himself as a director candidate, arguing that poor investor communications, capital allocation issues and a lack of board oversight led to significant underperformance at the company.
The investment firm owns a 0.2% stake in Ventas which is valued at $24 billion.
The proxy advisory firms, whose recommendations often guide investor voting to settle boardroom battles, backed all 11 of Ventas’s candidates saying they do not believe Land & Buildings made a compelling case to join the board.
Glass Lewis on Wednesday wrote that Land & Buildings’ concerns about Ventas’s stock performance are valid but that its concerns about capital allocation and governance “fall flat.”
The company has shifted its portfolio toward the most attractive areas of healthcare real estate and has refreshed its board with the “experience, skills and perspective” that it needs, the Glass Lewis report said.
A representative for Land & Buildings declined to comment.
Investors will vote on the matter on April 27 at Ventas’s annual meeting.
(Reporting by Svea Herbst-Bayliss; Editing by Stephen Coates)