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A Plug Power rebellion

By Bethany Bump
Thursday, February 21, 2013

A money management firm is calling for an alternate board to be voted in at Plug Power's next annual meeting, saying they are "appalled by the recent actions" of the board, according to a filing made today with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission.

The statement, made on behalf of Boston-based global asset manager Interinvest Corporation Inc., its two subsidiaries and its chairman Hans Black, comes one week after Plug Power announced it had priced a public offering of more than 18.9 million shares of its common stock and accompanying warrants so that it could purchase these shares at 15 cents each. The sale would raise $2.4 million for the Latham-based manufacturer of fuel cell systems. The offering was expected to close Wednesday.

Interinvest called the offering an "irrational proposition" and a "clear and uncalled for destruction of shareholder value" in the SEC filing.

Since last October, Interinvest and its subsidiaries in Canada and Bermuda have acquired an additional 5,647,522 shares of Plug Power common stock for about 14 cents per share, increasing their holdings from about 8 percent to more than 15 percent.

The company first bought Plug Power stock for investment purposes, but after talking with management and other shareholders, decided it wanted to increase its shares so that it could effect change at the company. Going forward, the firm plans to review its investment based on Plug Power's financial position, direction, security price levels and the economy.

Plug Power has been on precarious financial footing for months now. Last fall, the company was put on notice that it wasn't in compliance with NASDAQ rules because of too-low bid prices on its common stock over a period of 30 days. In December, the company laid off 22 full-time employees.

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