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Az Valor supports Amaral in Stock Spirits row

Published:  12 May, 2016

AZ Valor Partners have come out in support of Western Gate's proposals to nominate two candidates to the board of Stock Spirits.

The ongoing saga between Luis Amaral and Stock Spirits continues as AZ Valor, which holds 2.16% of Stock Spirits and represents funds holding an additional 1.11%, said it will support the proposal put forward by Amaral's Western Gate to nominate two directors to the Stock Spirits board.

Western Gate's proposal is opposed by Stock Spirits management.

This is the latest development in an on-going row between the vodka maker and the Portuguese businessman over concern with the way their key Polish market is being run.

Az Valor partners Alvaro Guzman de Lazaro and Fernando Bernard commented that Amaral's, "assessment of the weaknesses and problems afflicting the company has enough merit to be worth a profound consideration of the board and the management teams of Stock Spirits".

In the statement, Az Valor added: "By virtue of its close to 10% stake in Stock Spirits, [Amaral's Western Gate] has risked significant ''skin in the game'' and we believe his interests are aligned alongside ours in the long term."

Stock Spirits shares rose 5.98% to 164 pence following reports of Az Valor's support.

Stock Spirits Group PLC announced last month that chief executive officer Chris Heath would be stepping down to take early retirement.

The departure followed a period of unrest at the vodka-makers after Amaral - the company's largest individual shareholder - called for Heath to step down.

Portuguese businessman Amaral tried to stage a coup at the London-listed company, stating that Heath did not have the skill set in order to right the company's current problems with the Polish market.