19 Sep 2011

Shareholders Assn to summarise papers on Telecom split

6:40 am on 19 September 2011

The Shareholders Association says it will summarise the mountain of information that Telecom investors have to wade through in order to consider a potential split.

Telecom was required to provide a 538-page document explaining the proposal to split its network and retail arms into two separately listed companies.

Shareholders Association chairman John Hawkins says the law requires the phone book size document to be sent to shareholders at a cost of about $500,000.

"It's not Telecom's fault, it's the fault of the law which requires it to be this length,'' he said.

''We think the law is an ass in this regard, and in fact the Government is changing the law."

Mr Hawkins said Telecom is prevented from summarising the material, so the association is writing a synopsis.

"What they really require is a brief summary of the key points. An awful lot of the stuff that's in the documentation is highly detailed, things which are irrelevant to the basic decision."

The association says a three or four-page summary of the key points should be on its website later this week.

Mr Hawkins says a law change allowing companies to provide shareholders with briefer, more readable documents could be passed next year.