Ally Financial and Lion Point Capital have engaged PR counsel as the hedge fund makes a bid for two seats on the board of the former auto-lending unit of General Motors.
Sloane & Company reps New York-based Lion Point, which is pressing Ally's board over a perceived "gap between the company's intrinsic value and its stock price." Lion Point has pushed for "strategic alternatives" in addition to its nomination of two unnamed directors.
Ally, which has engaged Sard Verbinnen & Co., went public with Lion Point's previously undisclosed overtures on Jan. 4, contending stockholder value would not be enhanced by pursuing alternatives like a sale. The company called Lion Point's actions over the past two months "particularly disappointing."
Chairman Franklin Hobbs said: "Although we are troubled by Lion Point's tactics, our fundamental disagreement is with Lion Point's clear agenda to force a sale of Ally."
Ally, bailed out by the government to the tune of $17.2B in the financial crisis in 2008, went public in April 2014 in a disappointing IPO. The New York Times noted Lion Point faces an uphill climb to earn shareholder support of its agenda as it owns less than one percent of Ally.
In a statement, Lion Point said its goal is "to ensure that the voices of Ally's shareholders are heard and that policies are in place to address the significant undervaluation of the Company should such undervaluation persist."
Sloane's Elliot Sloane and Dan Zacchei rep Lion Point. Sard chairman and CEO George Sard and managing director Denise DesChenes are advising Ally in support of Gina Proia, chief communications officer at the Detroit-based company.
Ally's annual meeting is slated for May 3.