BAF shareholders agree to kick out Blue Sky, bring in Wilson as manager
9 September 2020, Written by Matt Ogg
Blue Sky Alternatives Access Fund (ASX: BAF) shareholders have voted overwhelmingly in favour of a plan to shake off the yoke of their fallen manager.
At an EGM yesterday afternoon BAF shareholders voted to bring in Wilson Asset Management (WAM) as its manager, and do away with the similarly named Blue Sky Alternative Investments (ASX: BLA) which entered receivership in May last year.
Only 0.03 per cent of shareholders voted against the motion, while only 0.12 per cent were against the motion to change the company name and constitution, which is hoped will bring a new lease of life to the fund under the name WAM Alternative Assets.
As a result of these votes, WAM chairman and chief investment officer Geoff Wilson AO and WAM lead portfolio manager Adrian Siew have been appointed directors at BAF.
However, neither Wilson nor Siew will receive directors' fees initially due to an existing director fee that is in place.
BAF expects legal documentation for the manager transition to be completed and conditions satisfied in the coming days.
In a statement, Geoff Wilson AO vowed to return the BAF share price to a premium on its net tangible assets (NTA). This has been a sticking point with directors in the past who have felt the Blue Sky association have weighed down their share valuation.
"The principle of the Premium Target is simple: the Company's share price needs to trade at a premium to its pre-tax NTA for a period of one month for it to be achieved," Wilson said.
"If this does not occur at least three times during the next five years, shareholders will automatically have the right to vote to terminate the arrangements with Wilson Asset Management, and to liquidate the company.
"We are highly committed to ensuring the success of WAM Alternative Assets. I personally hold 6.4 million shares in the Company, I hope you will join me in becoming a shareholder of WAM Alternative Assets."
Wilson noted Australian retail investors have had limited exposure to alternative investment opportunities comprising real assets, private equity, real estate, private debt and infrastructure.
He said these asset classes provided investors with absolute returns uncorrelated with equity markets.
"The investment portfolio's current holdings provide significant investment opportunities, such as water rights, venture capital, growth capital and private real estate," he said.
"Our highly experienced alternative asset professionals will be investing alongside highquality investment managers under the Company's flexible "best-of-breed" mandate.
"The alternative assets investment team will be supported by a dedicated Investment Committee comprising individuals with intimate knowledge of the Australian and international alternative investments sector."Never miss a news update, subscribe here. Follow us on Facebook, LinkedIn, Instagram and Twitter.
Business News Australia
Author: Matt Ogg