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EasyJet says Stelios ups stake

  Low-cost airline easyJet said on Friday its founder Stelios Haji-Ioannou had upped his stake in the firm to 27%, demanded two new non-executive directors and a more cautious strategy.


EasyJet said in a statement Stelios had transferred shares owned by his sister to his holding company easyGroup, increasing his stake to 26.9% from 15.6%. This larger percentage entitles him to propose two new non-executive directors to the board, and he has asked for two easyGroup employees to be appointed, the airline added.

Stelios added that if the directors were not appointed he reserved the right to appoint himself as chairman. It said Stelios wanted the airline to restrict its aircraft orders and make future dividend payments in line with a slowing rate of growth in the current economic climate, a strategy more cautious than that currently being pursued by the firm. “In all the circumstances I would like to make it clear up front that the other non-executive directors and I fully support the executive management of the company.” Chairman Colin Chandler said in a statement. (Reuters)