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ISS recommendation to vote against GW chairman


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#1
GAZ_AV_NZ

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Seriously he's been in this position way too long
Explains a few things about gw business model

https://www.thetimes...kshop-lqqmd0c8d
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#2
Frater Antodeniel

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I'm no specialist about British business structures and law regarding high positions....so, if anyone can enlightened me on the nature and consequences of this new, i would welcome the knowledge.


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#3
templargdt

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...just as planned.

1 John 4:8

 

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#4
Wraith776

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Anyone got a copy of the article not behind a paywall?

 

Seems like an interesting situation.


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#5
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Please remember that the N&R serves as an information resource for the community - a misleading title does not help anyone know what it is about. I have edited the title to be more appropriate, as noted ideally a better link could be provided as there isn't much to discuss here presently. Thanks thumbsup.gif


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#6
Joe

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The UK Corporate Government Code does recommend that "the chair should not remain in post beyond nine years from the date of their first appointment to the board", to which Games Workshop responded some time ago.

In making this assessment as to independence, the board has taken into account the personal attributes of each director in relation to the current and future needs of the board. In the opinion of the board, independence (like judgement and wisdom) is not an attribute which can be measured by reference to a checklist. It is rather an attribute which the members of the board can observe being demonstrated by a director in his actions and interactions with other members of the board as it faces the various issues which are placed before it. Independence is the absence of complacency, lazy thinking and acceptance of the status quo.
 
Regarding the specific Code circumstance of service of over nine years, the board’s position is as follows:
 
The ‘nine year rule’ is a helpful guide to the risk of directors becoming ‘stale’. The board considers this risk periodically, but has not yet found it to be an issue at Games Workshop. If it did, it would react accordingly. At present the board feels that the requirement for members of the board to have a real understanding of, and empathy with, the Warhammer hobby to be a point in favour of retaining the experience which the board currently has.
 
Based upon its assessment, which focuses on each director’s attitude towards making his best contribution to the progress of the Company, the board considers that Nick Donaldson is independent.
 
The Company has complied with all of the provisions set out in the Code.


That aside, ISS are American-owned, and have a bit of a dodgy reputation around the market square. Whilst Nick has certainly served in his position for quite some time this reeks of something more sinister.

Edited by Joe, 14 September 2020 - 12:01 PM.

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#7
Skywrath

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I'm not sure whether this is a good thing or bad thing to be honest - can someone fill me on the bigger picture? 


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#8
Doctor Perils

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Didn't GW recently hit £100 shares? what seems to be wrong in their opinion?

What ain't broke shouldn't be "fixed" Yadda yadda
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#9
Dark Shepherd

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Its such a unique company too that you cant put some journeyman random exec there from Weyland Yutani's budget hotel division or whatever
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#10
MegaVolt87

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Didn't GW recently hit £100 shares? what seems to be wrong in their opinion?

What ain't broke shouldn't be "fixed" Yadda yadda

 

Line up all the ducks to make the brand/company mainstream and with a household name + added goodwill value, tank the stocks for a takeover, resign walking out with the golden handshake. Time passes, get the nod/ connection from the new majority holding group for new job(s) for more money. Mods save this post if the GW Hydra lawyers come for me lol


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#11
Rik Lightstar

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It's likely that a lot of the corporate investors will be seeing the "recent" rise in popularity fantasy and sci-fi franchises including Star Wars' Mandalorian, Game of Thrones, Harry Potter and forthcoming Wheel of Time series.

 

This may lead them to believe that the GW Franchises can be better monetised for increased dividends.

 

Personally I think this would be a bad move for the longevity of the company.

 

Rik


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The Codex Astartes: Taking Away The Freedom Of The Astartes To Pigeonhole Themselves, 
And Restricting Them To Supreme Flexibility Since M31
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#12
MegaVolt87

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It's likely that a lot of the corporate investors will be seeing the "recent" rise in popularity fantasy and sci-fi franchises including Star Wars' Mandalorian, Game of Thrones, Harry Potter and forthcoming Wheel of Time series.
 
This may lead them to believe that the GW Franchises can be better monetised for increased dividends.
 
Personally I think this would be a bad move for the longevity of the company.
 
Rik


Yeah, either it's going to begin cleaning house to stop that or doing it to expidite such a transition, tabletop becoming just mere merchandise to support media. *shudders in house of mouse.*
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#13
Lord Nord

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18 years? Pffft. They haven't even started sacrificing psykers to keep him alive yet.


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#14
Irbis

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Didn't GW recently hit £100 shares? what seems to be wrong in their opinion?

What ain't broke shouldn't be "fixed" Yadda yadda

 

Seriously? facepalm.png

 

I have no idea how a fan of 40K can write this sentence. Their shares soar on the back of record profits. Profits, mind you, extracted by going back to terribad, insane strategy of raising the prices of everything every six months. Me and my friends used to buy lot of 40K stuff. Now? We look at the price of new box, and more often than not, we go 'meh' and do without, or convert stuff from cheaper parts or leftover bits. Thanks to rising prices, instead of spending 30-40$ on cheaper box, we look at 50$ one, shrug, and GW gets ZERO. For now, whales do cover ensuing shortfall, but it does terrible things to attracting new players to the game (hell, for the first time in forever, there is no big, eye-catching, good value starter set! After 8th edition got it pretty much perfectly!) and if you don't recall, it's exactly how the last death spiral started for GW a decade ago...

 

It's likely that a lot of the corporate investors will be seeing the "recent" rise in popularity fantasy and sci-fi franchises including Star Wars' Mandalorian, Game of Thrones, Harry Potter and forthcoming Wheel of Time series.

 

This may lead them to believe that the GW Franchises can be better monetised for increased dividends.

 

Personally I think this would be a bad move for the longevity of the company.

Yeah, because getting some big movie company to do AAA movie like 1917, only with Imperial Guard or Space Marines, or say ID to make Space Marine II FPS game, or Netflix doing big and successful Ciaphas Cain series with Cavill would instantly tank the popularity of 40K and kill longevity of the company rolleyesclean.gif



#15
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This is strange. Kevin Rountree's tenure as CEO has been an unparalleled success by any relevant, conceivable metric. Revenue has more than doubled during his time, share prices and sales are at an all time high. Everything seems to be synergising well in the company, which would suggest Donaldson is performing well in his role as non-executive chairman.

 

Why meddle? Unless, of course, it's the success that has instigated the interference. 


Edited by MechaMan, 14 September 2020 - 04:26 PM.

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#16
MARK0SIAN

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The argument against him doesn’t seem to be performance related.

They’re simply arguing (correctly imo) that being in the role for so long compromises the independence of anyone, no matter how good they are. And the role is meant to be independent.

The company doing well and it being time for someone new aren’t mutually exclusive.
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#17
MechaMan

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Fair enough. I wonder though, how helpful "independence" would be in an industry as niche as miniature wargaming and with a company like Games Workshop, which is, lets face it - somewhat exceptional.

 

I'll confess, I'm not overly familiar with the role of non-executive directors and chairmen - so this may well be delivered straight from my derriere, but would complete independence (i.e. ignorance of the miniature gaming industry and GW) actually be that helpful?

 

Take this quote, for example: "As an 'outsider,' the non-exeuctive director may have a clearer or wider view of external factors affecting the company and its business environment than the executive directors." - Do we really think that's true for Games Workshop and wargaming, would some city executive really have a clearer idea of external factors affecting them than their own execs/people familiar with the industry and company... I'm not so sure.

 

"Non-executive directors are usually chosen because they have a breadth of experience... of an appropriate calibre... Additionally, they may have some specialist knowledge that will help provide the board with valuable insights". Again, for something like miniature wargaming/Games Workshop, I feel that would require real familiarity with the industry and company.

 

I kinda get why GW said: "At present the board feels that the requirement for members of the board to have a real understanding of, and empathy with, the Warhammer hobby to be a point in favour of retaining the experience which the board currently has." It makes sense to me.


Edited by MechaMan, 14 September 2020 - 04:50 PM.

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#18
MARK0SIAN

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Oh yeah, don’t get me wrong, I’m not advocating he goes or anything. I don’t mind if he stays or leaves. I’m just saying it’s not about performance in the role.

Essentially it boils down to if you think the need for independence outweighs the the other concerns. GW clearly don’t and I’m fine with their reasoning :)
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#19
Minuros

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In my opinion it is the americans stirring the pot in order to lower the price. My greatest fear for GW is that it will get bought off by an American conglomerate such as Hasbro or Disney. It would lose all of it’s charm and start churning out crap until it’s games are either done or turns into something like MTG.

 

On the other hand, I would love someone like Jervis Johnson, Moorcock (fat chance teehee.gif) or Rick Priestley have a go. If pizza guy can do it, I am sure they can.


Edited by Minuros, 14 September 2020 - 05:17 PM.

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#20
Lord Marshal

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 or turns into something like MTG.

 

You mean it's not already?


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#21
MechaMan

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In my opinion it is the americans stirring the pot in order to lower the price. My greatest fear for GW is that it will get bought off by an American conglomerate such as Hasbro or Disney. It would lose all of it’s charm and start churning out crap until it’s games are either done or turns into something like MTG.

 

The stuff of literal nightmares. It would be a sad day if GW went the same way as Cadburys, Walkers, Lyle's Golden Syrup, HP and Worcester Sauce.


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#22
Dark Shepherd

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How much of GW is publicly traded?
As in how much of the stock is owned by the board or other employees/GW people?
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#23
Rik Lightstar

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Didn't GW recently hit £100 shares? what seems to be wrong in their opinion?

What ain't broke shouldn't be "fixed" Yadda yadda


Seriously? facepalm.png

I have no idea how a fan of 40K can write this sentence. Their shares soar on the back of record profits. Profits, mind you, extracted by going back to terribad, insane strategy of raising the prices of everything every six months. Me and my friends used to buy lot of 40K stuff. Now? We look at the price of new box, and more often than not, we go 'meh' and do without, or convert stuff from cheaper parts or leftover bits. Thanks to rising prices, instead of spending 30-40$ on cheaper box, we look at 50$ one, shrug, and GW gets ZERO. For now, whales do cover ensuing shortfall, but it does terrible things to attracting new players to the game (hell, for the first time in forever, there is no big, eye-catching, good value starter set! After 8th edition got it pretty much perfectly!) and if you don't recall, it's exactly how the last death spiral started for GW a decade ago...

It's likely that a lot of the corporate investors will be seeing the "recent" rise in popularity fantasy and sci-fi franchises including Star Wars' Mandalorian, Game of Thrones, Harry Potter and forthcoming Wheel of Time series.

This may lead them to believe that the GW Franchises can be better monetised for increased dividends.

Personally I think this would be a bad move for the longevity of the company.

Yeah, because getting some big movie company to do AAA movie like 1917, only with Imperial Guard or Space Marines, or say ID to make Space Marine II FPS game, or Netflix doing big and successful Ciaphas Cain series with Cavill would instantly tank the popularity of 40K and kill longevity of the company rolleyesclean.gif

Or some censored.gif of a Michael Bay travesty with a George Lucas style script.

Rik


Edited by WarriorFish, 14 September 2020 - 08:42 PM.
Do not dodge the swear filter

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.


#24
depthcharge12

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In my opinion it is the americans stirring the pot in order to lower the price. My greatest fear for GW is that it will get bought off by an American conglomerate such as Hasbro or Disney. It would lose all of it’s charm and start churning out crap until it’s games are either done or turns into something like MTG.

On the other hand, I would love someone like Jervis Johnson, Moorcock (fat chance teehee.gif) or Rick Priestley have a go. If pizza guy can do it, I am sure they can.


GW already has massive IP infringement of Moorcock’s work lol, why do you think he would be be a chairman? I don’t think his personal politics align with that sort of work either.

Homeboy didn’t go after the Witcher for the blatant copy paste job they did off of Elric Melnibone nor the chaos symbol and chaos/order struggle that warhammer worships at the alter of. I doubt he has goodwill towards GW though.
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#25
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This is liek totally freaking me out now .
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