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July 22, 2014
08:47 EDTALCSALCO Stores responds to CAS group proxy solicitation materials
ALCO Stores issued a statement responding to the proxy solicitation materials filed by a dissident shareholder group calling itself Concerned ALCO Shareholders, or CAS, which is seeking to elect a slate to replace the current board. Commenting on the CAS proxy solicitation materials, ALCO board chairman Royce Winsten stated, "We have been very clear in our communications with shareholders that recent sales and earnings results have been unacceptable. That said, several of their statements are incorrect, exaggerated or misleading. The current board has never been shy about confronting the difficult challenges faced by ALCO. We have made substantial progress in transforming this company to improve returns. While there are no 'quick fixes,' we believe shareholders will benefit from continuing the momentum created by this Board and senior management team," Winsten said. He cited several examples of positive results the board has achieved, including: Secured, and recommended to shareholders, a $14 all-cash bid for all of the company's shares in 2013 from Argonne Capital Group, a respected private equity firm -- an offer that the shareholders of the company voted down. Adopted a Shareholder Rights Plan to prevent a takeover by Everbright Development Overseas, which the board regarded as flawed. In a complaint filed in June by the SEC, the securities regulator called Everbright a "predatory entity" and accused it of a "scheme" that "victimized" an unrelated U.S. company through a false tender offer. The SEC alleged that Luis Chang, a principal of Everbright, "has fled to China" and froze his assets. "An important point of emphasis," Winsten stated, "is that the existing board has worked diligently for the best interests of all shareholders, not a narrow group pursuing its own private agenda. The CAS group has been unwilling to meet with us or to discuss their intentions, beyond leveling criticisms in their proxy filings."
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