TORONTO – There are media reports that Barrick Gold Corp. (TSX:ABX) is under investor pressure to hasten the transfer of power from Peter Munk, the company’s co-founder and co-chair of its board of directors.
The Wall Street Journal says its sources say some large investors in Europe are pushing for Munk to set a date for handing over power to co-chairman John Thornton.
The Globe and Mail says it has been told a small U.S.-based hedge fund has also contacted other investors to push for change at Barrick’s board of directors.
Toronto-based Barrick Gold is one of the world’s largest gold producers.
Its shares have dropped dramatically in the past year due to its own internal difficulties as well as the plunging price of gold.
Barrick shares closed Monday at $18.75, giving the company a market value of about $18.7 billion.
The shares have traded as low as $14.22 in July, about a month after Barrick announced a major South American project will be delayed and over budget.
Barrick’s stock has a 52-week high of $42.08, set about a year ago, but the shares have traded even higher in recent years.