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First Foundation Reaches Deal With Activist

Permits Driver to submit board nominee

First Foundation Inc. (Nasdaq: FFWM), a Dallas-based bank and wealth manager with significant operations in Irvine, said it has reached an agreement with activist investor Driver Management Company LLC to permit its nominee, Allison Ball, to run for the election on the board of directors.

The agreement “ends the parties’ costly and disruptive litigation in Delaware Chancery Court,” the company said in a statement, adding that the settlement contemplates mutually agreed upon governance practices related to the nomination of future nominees.

However, First Foundation said it has “concerns” about Ball, saying she lacks “executive experience in any relevant industry” and has “exhibited penchant for making inflammatory, insulting or degrading comments that would reflect negatively on the company, its clients and potential partners.”

Shares of First Foundation declined 2.8% to $6.31 and a $357 million market cap.

 

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Peter J. Brennan
Peter J. Brennan
Peter J. Brennan has been a journalist for 40 years. He spent a decade in Latin America covering wars, narcotic traffickers, earthquakes, and business. His resume includes 15 years at Bloomberg News where his headlines and articles sometimes moved the market caps of companies he covered by hundreds of millions of dollars. His articles have been published worldwide, including the New York Times and the Washington Post; he's appeared on CNN, CBC, BBC, and Bloomberg TV. He was awarded a Kiplinger Fellowship at The Ohio State University.
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