Hedge fund billionaire Sir Christopher Hohn has refused to walk away from his bitter battle with the London Stock Exchange, instead insisting on a shareholder vote to oust chairman Donald Brydon.

Sir Christopher, who runs The Children’s Investment Fund (TCI) which owns 5pc of the LSE, has been in a running feud with the LSE board over the departure of its long-standing chief executive Xavier Rolet.

Mr Rolet initially announced in October that he would leave LSE by the end of 2018. Sir Christopher claimed that Mr Rolet was being forced out and campaigned to keep him in the job, demanding that Mr Brydon step down instead.

However Mr Rolet made the dramatic decision to depart with immediate effect yesterday, while Mr Brydon said he would not stand for re-election in 2019.

This prompted the LSE board to ask Sir Christopher to pull his request for a shareholder vote on the pair’s future “in the best interests of the company”.

Sir Christopher said he would not drop his call for the meeting because his stance on whether Mr Brydon should go had not changed. He backed down from his campaign to keep Mr Rolet in the role, however.

His refusal means shareholders will now vote on whether Mr Brydon should go on December 19, with the board urging investors on Thursday afternoon not to vote in favour of his exit.


That echoes Bank of England Governor Mark Carney’s statement that “everything comes to an end”, adding he was mystified by the row. Mr Rolet insisted yesterday that he would not return to the job “under any circumstances”.

The spat has been one of the biggest boardroom battles in recent memory, with the LSE board saying in its letter to Sir Christopher that his campaign had damaged the company and negatively affected Mr Rolet’s relationships with his fellow directors.

As one of the group’s largest shareholders the fund has the power to call emergency meetings. To succeed in his fight to oust Mr Brydon, Sir Christopher will need more than half of the investors who vote to back his exit.

Shareholders are losing patience with the bust-up, however. One major investor told The Daily Telegraph yesterday that the very public row had made the exchange vulnerable to a takeover bid – particularly from the Intercontinental Exchange, which showed an interest in the British bourse last year.

“Why did TCI have to go so vocal and so public on this? For the last few weeks I felt this would never end happily,” the person said.

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