Through various sources we are piecing together Thursday’s agenda and to the surprise of nobody, the A Shareholders and their Board of mercenaries have filled it with items designed to further enrich themselves, hurt the associates and make Arthur T jump through hoops.
- They have asked for Arthur to explain to them the 4% discount program in the form of a business case presentation. Here we see just how out of touch they are with how we do business in that they want a formal presentation when the common sense facts would do just fine. Decades of field experience among our leadership team have given them the equivalent of multiple PhD’s in the grocery industry along with the keen instincts that made this program a no-brainer to launch. The “A’s” and their henchmen are so linear in their thinking and their quest for maximum shareholder value that they cannot understand the concept of enhancing customer loyalty, shaking up the market place and winning hordes of new patrons. What the Board will be looking for instead will probably include something called “Gap Analysis”, which asks the basic question: “where are we now and where do we want to be?”….we could answer that quite simply for them, though they probably wouldn’t like what we had to say…
- There is to be a vote on Waltham. Finally…we can hope that they have smartened up and will move forward so that we can right the wrongs that have been done to the city of Waltham and all of the contractors who signed on to build that store. Not to mention the many new associates who were hoping to join our team along with the thousands of new customers who were so excited to shop and save money there.
- A discussion on a proposed amendment to the Profit Sharing Plan. What could they possibly have in mind for the greatest plan in the land? They will either be looking to enhance it for us or to lessen it for us. Which way do you think this board would be leaning? We can only speculate that in their march to liquidity, alongside the “harm” done to them when ATD made us whole with the $46m he put back into the plan when the market crashed, they will be looking to siphon money away from us so that they may gain.
- The Finance Committee may be voting on banking resolutions. Again we speculate, but common sense tells us this has something to do with taking on debt. Why would they want to take on debt when the company is flush with cash?…
- …So that they can have a discussion and vote on Shareholder Distributions! When you measure all that you are by how much money you have, as Arthur S. Demoulas does every day of his pathetic little life, you want to be sure that you take as much money possible from the company as often as you can. Let there be no doubt that this discussion will be centered on how much bigger the distributions can be (once they’ve “amended” the profit sharing plan) and how often they can be taken.
- Another interesting topic that we’ll all be interested in is Board Compensation. Yes, these gentlemen need a raise. Being a carpetbagger is hard work and if you add on top of that the task of pushing along an agenda that will help to ruin a great American company that was built on the hard work of thousands throughout multiple generations, then you see that $200-300k per year is way too little. Mr. Marsden doesn’t get a bonus, but these three fools will get a raise. Makes perfect sense, no?
- Keith Cowan will present a report on the status of things with Spencer Stuart. This is the search firm hired at a premium (close to a half million dollars so far, from what we hear) to find the replacement for ATD and our Executive leadership team. Hopefully Keith will ask for a refund. This presentation will lead into the final matter on the agenda which is…
- …A Report from the Special Committee. When will this lunacy come to an end? What can they possibly say here? Their charge is to report on Arthur T. Demoulas and grade his leadership of our company. If Cowan had an ounce of courage in the face of ASD or an inch of independence, he would stand up and demand the handcuffs be taken off so that Arthur T can get back to the business of growing this company.
Glaring in its omission from what we’ve learned of the agenda so far is any discussion on our bonuses. So to keep score, we see that the Board will vote themselves a raise; the shareholders will increase their distributions; our profit sharing plan will suffer and our bonuses aren’t even on their radar. We will let you know if we learn differently, but as of now we have not heard that these are to be discussed.
If you haven’t emailed the shareholders yet, get on it. If you have a pin at home and didn’t wear it today, put it on tomorrow. Stiffen your resolve and steel your will because this is our fight to win.