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A big part of instilling investor confidence means companies being transparent and allowing stakeholders access to management when information is required. In dealings last week, AVI — the owner of more than 50 brands, mainly in the food sector — awarded shares to senior executives as part of the company’s limited out-performance scheme (LOP).

Under the scheme, the company awarded Keith Phillips, the MD of its international division, 44,244 shares at a price of R57.86. Total consideration was R2.56m. Phillips subsequently sold all the stock at R92.72/share, for a total value of R4m.

Sarah-Anne Orphanides, MD of Entyce Beverages, accepted 22,746 shares at R57.86, then sold them at R92.80/share.

When asked for clarity on the LOP scheme, AVI pointed to its annual report for an answer. The report shows AVI executives belong to three share-incentive schemes and also receive short-term cash bonuses. According to the 2016 annual report, AVI will pay executives 50%-60% of their remuneration under the LOP scheme if the company meets a certain total shareholder return measure above its peers. No shares will vest if AVI’s total shareholder return comes in below the 40th peer group decile.

Not many ordinary investors will understand that language without assistance.