(Adds Barclays could not be reached for comment)
LONDON, April 23 A group of British public
sector pension funds has heaped pressure on Barclays
ahead of its annual general meeting by saying it has governance
concerns over the company's search for a new chairman.
That could add even more spice to Thursday's meeting as
investors are asked to approve the bank's plan to increase the
staff bonus pool by 10 percent even though 2013 profits
The furore that plan initially caused had already prompted
the replacement of the head of its remuneration committee, John
Sunderland. As a result, his role in leading the search for a
new company chairman was inappropriate, the Local Authority
Pension Fund Forum (LAPFF) said on Wednesday.
"How can it be appropriate for him to lead the selection of
Barclays' new Chair to replace Sir David Walker?" the LAPFF,
whose 60 members collectively manage more than 120 billion
pounds ($201.34 billion) in assets, said in a statement.
"There have been significant concerns expressed by LAPFF
over governance and executive remuneration at Barclays for some
time now. It appears that a continuing series of no votes by
institutional shareholders is one of the few options open for
meaningful engagement at Barclays."
Barclays could not be reached for comment outside of regular
Earlier this month Pirc, a shareholder advisory group, told
investors they should oppose Barclays' bonus payouts for last
year, as well as its controversial plan to make extra payments
On Tuesday British business minister Vince Cable singled out
the Barclays as he warned that companies must rein in "excessive
and disproportionate" executive pay or face tighter regulation.
($1 = 0.5960 British pounds)
(Reporting by Simon Jessop and Jemima Kelly; additional
reporting by Richa Naidu; Editing by David Goodman)