Gambling boss vows to stay after being handed a £2.5m bonus in company shares
Bonus: Kenneth Alexander insisted he was ‘totally committed to GVC
The boss of Ladbrokes and Foxy Bingo owner GVC has sought to calm investor nerves as he was awarded shares worth £2.5million by the company.
Kenneth Alexander insisted he was ‘totally committed to GVC’, and promised not to sell any more stock for the rest of his time as chief executive.
His pledge came less than three weeks after he offloaded more than 2m shares worth nearly £14million, sending the stock tumbling.
Lee Feldman, GVC’s chairman, also sold 900,000 shares – worth £6million – and it is understood that he will leave the company in the coming months.
GVC yesterday announced it was awarding Alexander, 49, another 450,000 shares, linked to performance targets.
They were worth £2.5million at when the market closed.
The award takes the future number of shares Alexander could be handed to more than 1m.
He already has a personal holding of 666,666.
The combined value of the shares is around £9.2million.
Alexander said: ‘I remain totally committed to GVC for the long-term, and as such I will not sell any further shares in GVC while I am chief executive.
‘We have had an excellent start to the year and I look forward to updating on progress in our first-quarter trading update.’
The slump in GVC’s share price after Alexander and Feldman sold their shares was the worst for nine years.
It came days before the Cheltenham Festival, a crucial week for bookies when punters bet millions on one of the world’s most prestigious horseracing events.
GVC, which bought Ladbrokes Coral last year for £4billion, is now turning its attentions to the US, where sports gambling laws have been relaxed.