You are here
CINCINNATI - The Teamsters union is accusing Kroger Co. of "corporate arrogance," saying a union-backed proposal to change how Kroger board members are elected has been ignored by management, the Cincinnati Post reports.
The Teamsters Affiliates Pension Plan, which owns more than 112,000 shares of Kroger stock, asks that all the company?s board members be elected each year, with the idea that board diversity will be improved.
For four years in a row, a majority of shareholder votes were made in favor of the Teamsters plan.
But the Kroger board has opposed the move, saying staggered three-year terms mean a more experienced board and help prevent hostile takeovers.
Kroger said Monday that shareholders haven't taken the proper steps to bring about annual elections.
"The regulations governing the conduct of Kroger's business provides that the board of directors be elected in three separate classes," Kroger said. "No shareholder has proposed an amendment to the regulations. The Teamster proposal did not seek to amend the regulations."
Shareholders would have to approve an amendment to regulations concerning director elections by a 75-percent vote, Kroger said.
"To continually ignore the majority will of shareholders takes a level of corporate arrogance not thought dared in this post-Enron environment," said Louis Malizia, assistant director of the Teamsters office of corporate affairs.
Malizia said the Teamsters are willing to discuss the issue with board members.