Hedge Fund Touts Probe of Vitesse Directors
SAN FRANCISCO -- Shareholder activism has merged with America's Most Wanted-style drama in the latest twist to the strange saga of Vitesse Semiconductor (VTSS).
On Tuesday, one of the chipmaker's largest institutional shareholders went gumshoe, initiating a "formal investigation" and launching a telephone hotline designed to collect tips discrediting two newly appointed board members.
"Chapman Capital encourages any party who has endured professional interaction with or exposure to either Ms. Willow Shire or Mr. Steve Hanson to contact Chapman Capital, anonymously or for attribution at the caller's full discretion," read the notice, which provided both a telephone number and email address.
The activist hedge fund claims to have already dug up "disconcerting" information about the two directors' backgrounds and affiliations in its own preliminary due diligence, which it said it would make available to certain Vitesse shareholders upon request.Chapman Capital, a Los Angeles-based parent of two hedge funds which together own 8.3% of Vitesse common stock, has been a thorn in Vitesse management's side for some time,
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