Synacor’s dissident shareholders fire back - The Buffalo News

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Synacor’s dissident shareholders fire back

The dissident shareholders seeking a sale of Synacor Inc. on Thursday blasted the Buffalo Internet content provider’s move earlier this week to put a poison pill anti-takeover defense in place, calling it a waste of the company’s money.

Synacor’s disgruntled shareholders – a group that includes investment firms JEC Capital Partners and Ratio Capital Management that hold a combined stake of 9.8 percent in the company – earlier this week called for Synacor Chairman Jordan Levy to resign and said the investors would seek two seats on the company’s board.

Synacor responded by adopting a shareholder rights plan that would make it much more expensive for the company to be acquired unless the deal was negotiated with its board. It also questioned the motives of one of its dissident shareholders, K. Peter Heiland, noting that he is interim CEO of a competitor, Piksel, that could be a potential acquirer of Synacor.

The shareholders responded with another letter to the board Thursday that repeated their earlier demands and criticized the poison pill defense.

“While we pose no threat to Synacor and are not using ‘coercive tactics to gain control of the company,’ we are evidently perceived as a threat to Chairman Levy, and he has responded by needlessly spending a large sum of Synacor’s cash implementing the rights plan,” the investors said.

Synacor’s stock closed down 2 cents at $2.46, less than half of its $5 IPO price in February 2012.

The company lost $1.4 million last year as its revenues slid by 8 percent after a change by Microsoft in its Windows 8 operating system relegated the start pages that Synacor operates for its customers to a secondary screen that requires additional clicks for users to access.


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