Information contained in the Sessa Capital proxy materials suggests that Sessa Capital, led by founder John Petry, may have intended to try and force out Ashford Hospitality Prime management as early as last October.
Sessa Capital is engaged in a proxy fight with Ashford Hospitality Prime (NYSE:AHP), a hotel REIT with the highest return on investment among its peers over almost every time period. As mentioned in earlier articles, BloggerNews suspects that Sessa Capital bought shares in AHP stock, doubled its position after AHP put itself up for sale, and hoped for a quick return on its investment.
When this quick sale didn’t materialize, BloggerNews now believes that Sessa Capital began planning its proxy fight against AHP stock as early as October of last year. The evidence appears in Sessa Capital’s own proxy materials, in the bio of Board of Director nominee Philip Livingston.
There, Sessa Capital writes the following:
“Philip Livingston, age 58, was the Chief Executive Officer and a director of Ambassadors Group, Inc., a provider of education travel experiences and online educational research materials, from May 2014 to October 2015.”
Then, further down, Sessa Capital has the following:
“Mr. Livingston currently serves a director of Ambassadors Group and Rand Worldwide, Inc.”
So Sessa Capital has a mix of tenses in their written material. Is this just a typo? We don’t think so. We believe that Sessa Capital wrote Mr. Livingston’s bio in September of 2015 — less than a month after AHP announced its sale. Livingston was still at Ambassadors Group at the time, yet we believe Sessa was preparing its nominee slate at that time — telegraphing its intention to launch a proxy fight as soon as it could.
Sessa Capital then updated the bio after Livingston ran Ambassadors group into the ground (itself suggesting he is uniquely unqualified to be on the AHP Board), but forgot to update the previous entry.
Why is this vitally inportant to AHP stock shareholders and Sessa Capital investors? It would virtually prove the case that Sessa Capital has no intention of doing what is in the best interest of AHP stock shareholders, but only in its own best interest — selling AHP as quickly as possible tor realize a profit on its investment.
Of course, this could be just a copy error. Yet even that speaks volumes for AHP stock shareholders. In that case, Sessa Capital clearly threw these proxy materials together and didn’t bother to proofread them. That’s sloppy and unprofessional. It is suggestive of a dismissive attitude towards the entire affair, as well as an arrogance. Sessa Capital seems to think that it can just slap together proxy materials like this? Perhaps it will also slap together any deal to sell AHP that it can that only benefits itself.