By Daniel Lanyon on Tuesday 30 January 2018
The investment trust is hoping for a turnaround in the coming months.
The £211m Ranger Direct Lending fund has appointed a third party to oversee its loan valuation ahead of a delay to the conclusion to its long running Princeton legal dispute.
It has also put in place a process that could see a co-manager added to the portfolio in addition to inviting external fund managers to apply to be its investment manager. After the nod of approval from its board and shareholders it “has initiated the formal process to determine the management arrangements for the Company beyond May 2018”, when its current investment management contract is up for renewal.
The board has appointed Kinmont to provide independent advice on this process and it say a further announcement will be made soon.
Ranger saw its share price fall dramatically in 2017 as its largest holding, another fund called Princeton Alternative Income fund, saw its own substantial holding in US lending platform Argon Credit hit by the collapse of the platform. Since then it has seen a number of write-downs as it put aside cash for legal fees and potential losses as well as cuts to its dividend . A larger investor BMO Asset Management also recently sold some of its stake in the fund.
On 26 June 2017, Ranger initiated arbitration proceedings against the Princeton Master Fund. This took place over 20 November 2017 to 30 November 2017 but was extended to a four-day period from 18 January 2018 and are now expected to conclude by 9 March 2018.
Following conclusion of the testimony, the parties will submit post hearing briefings and then the arbitration panel will have up to 30 days to make a determination in respect of its ruling this pushed forward the expected resolution.
It has appointed the new independent valuation firm, currently unnamed, to perform valuation consulting services on the company's portfolio (excluding the investment in Princeton.