The chair of listed investment company Premium Investors, Don Sharp, resigned last week after almost two and a half years at the helm to focus on his other business interests, according to newly appointed chair Tom Collins.

Collins said Sharp’s resignation “has been in train for some time”, but Sharp thought it most appropriate to make it public at the company’s annual general meeting. Collins had held a position as independent director on Premium’s board for two years and was appointed chairman the day Sharp resigned. In Sharp’s final address at the AGM last Thursday, he highlighted the terms of a new agreement with Treasury Group, the company to which Premium has outsourced its investment management and administrative services. Renegotiations of the 25-year contract signed with Treasury Group in 2003 took place for most of last financial year, according to Collins. Part of the new agreement includes a 10 basis point reduction in investment management fees paid to Treasury Group’s subsidiary Treasury Group Investment Services (TIS). In the last financial year Premium paid $5.4 million in fund management and performance fees and $430,120 in administrative fees to TIS. Sharp was a director of Treasury Group until May this year. In an announcement at the time, Treasury Group said Sharp’s resignation was prompted by his intention “to increase his involvement in an administration services business and as such that involvement could be perceived to have conflicts with the business of TRG”. Collins dismissed rumours of a strained relationship between Sharp and Treasury Group. “We had some willing discussions with [Treasury Group] but it all ended up amicably because we all realised what we wanted to try and achieve and we did work it out and it was all agreed earlier this year,” Collins said. Neither Sharp nor Treasury Group could not be contacted by press time.

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