Sham independents

Discovering that Woodford IM’s NEDs were hardly independent shows, yet again, why board and director ratings would help investors. Investors need to know if an independent is actually independent or a sham.

The Financial Times reports that two supposedly independent directors at Woodford Investment Management – Martin Walton and Marcia Campbell – had numerous links with the now disgraced manager. Both have resigned. The FT says that there was no hint of their association with Neil Woodford recorded at Companies House or in their LinkedIn profiles.

Martin Walton and Marcia Campbell reportedly invested in many of the same companies as Woodford IM did. Martin Walton’s association, in particular, with Neil Woodford was particularly close. And Woodford was also the largest shareholder in his firm, Arix Bioscience.

To read more on this story see the November issue of The NED.