Progressive Railroading


Newsletter Sign Up
Stay updated on news, articles and information for the rail industry

All fields are required.

Rail News Home Canadian Pacific


Rail News: Canadian Pacific

Pershing Square tabs Haggis as sixth nominee for CP's board

Today, Pershing Square Capital Management L.P. announced Paul Haggis as its sixth nominee for Canadian Pacific’s board. The firm’s nominees will stand for election at CP’s annual shareholders meeting on May 17.

Haggis currently is chairman of venture capital firm Alberta Enterprise Corp. He previously was president and chief executive officer of Canadian pension plan OMERS; president and CEO of commercial real estate development firm Princeton Developments Ltd.; president and CEO of financial firm Alberta Treasury Branches Inc.; president and CEO of Metropolitan Trustco and Metropolitan Financial Advisors Ltd. for Metropolitan Life; chief operating officer for MetLife's Canadian operations; executive vice president of development and chief credit officer of Manulife Financial; and VP and treasurer of Canadian operations for MetLife.

Joining Haggis on the slate of nominees are Pershing Square founder and CEO William Ackman, Pershing Square partner Paul Hilal, and Canadian business executives Gary Colter, Rebecca MacDonald and Anthony Melman.

“Paul's extensive experience leading the successful operational transformations of major Canadian institutions, including his expertise in pension fund oversight, complements the extensive experience of the other nominees,” said Ackman in a prepared statement. “Together, these nominees will refresh Canadian Pacific's board, adding energy, talent and experience that will accelerate its turnaround.”

Pershing Square — which has acquired a more than 14 percent stake in CP — is pushing for board and management changes, and financial and operational performance improvements at the Class I.

CP Chairman John Cleghorn contends that the board already comprises 15 highly qualified directors, including 13 independent members, who have extensive, relevant experience in railroads and complementary industries, and therefore doesn’t need six new members. CP has extended an offer only to Ackman to join the board.

CP senior executives also have stressed of late that elements of a multi-year plan already have been implemented and are producing financial and operational results, such as by driving volume growth, expanding network capacity and controlling costs through efforts to increase asset velocity, and boost efficiency and productivity. The plan is designed to decrease CP’s operating ratio to the low 70s by 2014 and prompt additional reductions afterward, they say.

Contact Progressive Railroading editorial staff.

More News from 2/22/2012