April 22 (Reuters) - Starboard Value LP, the biggest shareholder of Office Depot Inc, is taking its desire to unseat certain board members directly to shareholders.
Starboard, a New York-based investment firm that owns 14.8 percent of the office products retailer, said on Monday it had filed a preliminary consent solicitation with U.S. securities regulators allowing it to seek shareholder approval of its proposals absent a shareholder meeting.
Last month, Starboard nominated six candidates — including former Home Depot Inc Chief Executive Robert Nardelli — to Office Depot’s board, saying the retailer should engage with it immediately or schedule its annual shareholder meeting for a date prior to the potential closing of its proposed merger with OfficeMax Inc.
Given that the annual meeting has yet to be scheduled, Starboard said on Monday that it “had no choice but to seek to bypass the ineffectiveness of the current board” by launching a consent solicitation that would let shareholders vote on the new slate immediately.
Office Depot was not immediately available to comment.