7 questions asked at 2024 AMP hybrid AGM

April 22, 2024

Here is the text of the 7 written questions lodged at the 2024 AMP hybrid AGM held on April 12, along with a summary of the answers and some links to videos via Twitter. There were no material protest votes and the meeting lasted 2.5 hours with questions from about 20 different shareholders, including the fabulous activist fund manager, Fred Woollard.

Q1. How did we pick Jefferies to be our broker for the buy back and why have we only spent around $50m when you were authorised to spend up to $350m at last year's AGM and then announced an intention to spend up to $295m? With the stock rising 25% so far this year, isn't it time to pause the buyback because the shares are no longer as cheap. How high would they have to get to cause the buyback to be paused?

Answer: Chair Debra Hazelton gave a meandering response. Watch video of exchange via Twitter.

Q2. The likes of Dexus, Brambles, NAB, JB Hi Fi, Origin Energy, Viva Energy, Carsales and many other companies have all disclosed the proxy votes to the ASX before their latest AGMs started, along with the formal addresses. Will new chair Mike Hirst agree to do this next year so that interested shareholders and other stakeholders, including institutional investors and proxy advisers, have an early insight into the proxy position before the AGM debate commences.

Answer: The chair was at first confused thinking they had done this and then declined to invite Mike Hirst to commit. At least the proxies were displayed early in the meeting. Watch video of exchange via Twitter.

Q3. Could new directors Kathleen Bailey-Lord and Anna Leibel, along with incoming chair Mike Hirst, comment on the recruitment process that led to the new appointments to the board. Was a head hunter involved, did the full board interview both nominees and did they interview any other candidates? Did either Kathleen or Anna know any of our existing directors before engaging with the recruitment process?

Answer: Neither candidate was invited to respond but the chair said they did have a head hunter who started with a long list of almost 100 and then they interviewed a short list of 4. Watch video of exchange via Twitter.

Q4. Could Anna please comment on whether she was involved in the selection of Mike Hirst as the new chair given that she only joined the AMP board on January 1 this year and the succession decision was announced on February 14. Was Anna aware that the chair was going when she joined the board. When was the formal chair succession decision taken and were there multiple internal candidates for the role which led to a formal contested ballot? Did we use a search firm to assist with the process and were any external candidates considered?

Answer: The chair took this one and said the succession process was "very robust" with external candidates considered. Suspect it was a contest. Watch video of exchange via Twitter.

Q5. How many AMP shares does AMP own in itself and have these been voted on any of today's resolutions, including the remuneration report? Also, congratulations on publicly disclosing AMP Capital's voting record for many years. Will new chair Mike Hirst continue supporting this approach and why doesn't he advocate for the same approach at AMCIL, where he has served on the board since 2019 . AMCIL is part of the AFIC stable of listed investment companies worth more than $9 billion, but none of them have ever publicly disclosed their voting record in the companies they invest in.

Answer: The chair protected Mike Hirst from answering his part and said the 1.35% stake which AMP controls in itself was not voted. Watch video of exchange via Twitter.

Q6. The 2004 annual report stated that AMP had 977,100 shareholders six years after the demutualisation and float. The latest annual report put the number at 441,410, but over the past 12 months the number of shareholders with an unmarketable parcel has more than doubled from 40,313 to 95,145. I asked about this last year but the chair didn't know and didn't defer to someone who did, so here we go again. Are we planning another unmarketable parcel offer to reduce the size of our overly large and expensive share register and how many of these offers have we done over the years? Could incoming chair Mike Hirst also comment on this issue. Is he open to doing an unmarketable parcel offer?

Answer: A much better response than last year. Chair said they had done 3 of these since listing with the last in 2021. Watch video of exchange via Twitter.

Q7. Thank you to Debra Hazelton for her 5 years of service on the board, the last 3 as chair. It is always helpful for investors to have access to some exit perspectives from retiring independent directors. In her final contribution as an AMP director, could Debra please comment on what she regards as the best decisions AMP made during her time on the board and does she have any regrets? Also, was the decision to go influenced by the 15% vote against her re-election at last year's AGM? If not, why is she leaving 1 year into her 3 year term?

Answer: Debra said cultural change and hiring Alexis George from ANZ were her two best decisions, but she offered up no regrets. Watch video of exchange via Twitter, plus these additional comments at the end when she said last year's 15% protest vote against her re-election was not a factor. Also, see Mike Hirst's generous send-off at the end of the meeting.