Shareholders vote to increase Quarto's borrowing powers

Shareholders vote to increase Quarto's borrowing powers

Shareholders have voted to change Quarto’s by-laws to allow the publisher to borrow more money from the bank.

At a special meeting on Wednesday (15th August), the majority of shareholders decided to back a move to allow the company to borrow four times the share capital of the corporation, up from a previous limit of three times.

They also voted in a rule to say there should be no less than two directors at the company at any time.

The illustrated publisher is currently nursing a £47m debt and has had a recent turbulent period, with its c.e.o. Marcus Leaver departing in May.

This followed a dramatic shareholders revolt which saw board members axed and founder Laurence Orbach returned as executive chairman of the board. The move was said to be motived by shareholders’ concerns over the publisher’s debt.

When Leaver left, Chuk Kin Lau, appointed to Quarto’s board in the boardroom coup, stepped up as interim chief executive officer.

In further twists to the company's management, Orbach stepped back to become non-executive director in early July and then departed the board altogether later that month. The company declined to comment on his exit from the board at the time.

Orbach and Lau together own 47% of the publisher (Orbach 20%, Lau 27%).

In its financial results for the year to end of 2017, revenue at the publisher had grown 1.4% to £152.4m but its operating profit for the year had fallen 58% to £7.2m.