June 28, 2019 / 7:34 AM / 20 days ago

BUZZ-Woodford Patient Capital rises on co's plans to cut debt, refresh board

** Neil Woodford’s listed fund Woodford Patient Capital Trust Plc’s shares up 3.9%

** Co plans to cut debt and refresh its board after talks with shareholders concerned about a slide in the company’s share price

** The listed investment trust’s stock has dropped over 21% since manager Neil Woodford suspended another one of his funds on June 3; WPCT shares a number of same holdings as suspended fund

** WPCT said it will reduce gearing, currently at 16.8%, to below 10% in 6 months and aims to be “generally operating ungeared within 12 months”

** Gearing is the company’s debt-to-equity ratio

** WPCT also assured investors that any future use of debt will be for short periods only

** WPCT board has also appointed Stephen Cohen, a veteran with over 30 years experience with open-end and closed-end funds, as independent non-executive director (Reporting by Shariq Khan in Bengaluru)

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