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BLUM Growth Fund, activist shareholder in Cosi, Inc. (NASDAQ:Cosi), today announced the Cosi Board of Directors has again failed to respond to its shareholders.
Without a stated and compelling plan to address the company's problems, and after repeatedly disregarding several innovative and comprehensive proposals to achieve profitability and increase shareholder value, the Cosi Board of Directors has ignored a request from investors for a special shareholder meeting.
An official response from the Chairman of the Board was requested by November 8, 2011 and that date passed without any response, indicating the Board's reluctance to hear what is really on the minds of Cosi shareholders. It is yet another instance of the Cosi Board of Directors blatantly ignoring the profound concerns from its various shareholders, many of whom feel the situation at Cosi is much more dire than the lack of urgency demonstrated by the Board.
As part of an ongoing effort to drive positive changes at Cosi through a shareholder democracy initiative, BLUM Growth Fund provided the opportunity for shareholders to participate in a voluntary, non-legally binding survey advertised in the Wall Street Journal and Investor’s Business Daily.
Shareholders revealed serious concerns through this survey over the past two weeks, as nearly 100 shareholder responses clearly demonstrate desperation for the Board of Directors to adopt a plan that would drive shareholder value. The overwhelmingly clear results of that survey were issued last week and are available on the BLUM Growth Fund website. They support a respectful request for the Cosi Board of Directors to exercise its power on behalf of shareholders and call a special shareholder meeting well before the annual shareholders meeting in May 2012.
Shareholders hoped the Board of Directors would address concerns regarding the company’s imminent failure and the recent appointment of a new Board Director, Stephen Edwards. The appointment appears to be a result of the appointee’s experience and past association with several Board Directors relating to the sale of a distressed restaurant company at a loss to its shareholders.