FirstGroup urged to reconsider call for break-up

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Transport giant FirstGroup has been pressed to think again over a call from one of its shareholders to spin off its operations in the US.

The Aberdeen-based group last month rejected the proposals, from hedge fund Sandell Asset Management, arguing the plans contained “structural flaws and inaccuracies”.

However, Sandell – which owns about 3.1 per cent of FirstGroup – has written to its board to push again for the sale of the Greyhound coach business and the flotation of its yellow school bus operations. The investor said FirstGroup’s rejection of its initial approach was “premature”.

Chief executive Tom Sandell said: “We believe shareholders strongly support our ideas, and have been encouraged by their reaction since our engagement with the company became public.

“The board’s statement that it remains open to shareholder feedback is encouraging and will allow for constructive and open engagement about ways to improve the company’s performance and deliver value to shareholders.”