Prompted by an email about the BP AGM results, I thought I'd contrast recent shareholder rebellions at BP and Shell.
First here's a quick reminder of the vote on the re-election of the chair of the safety committee:
For - 57%
Oppose - 20%
Abstain - 23%
Compare that with the vote on the remuneration report at Shell in 2009:
For - 39%
Oppose - 57%
Abstain - 4%
Presumably the way that Shell pays its directors must be an issue of greater concern for investors in the oil industry than how BP manages safety. OK, I'm being flippant, but it does look a bit odd.
I spose that you could say that BP already paid a price by axing its CEO (although one might also argue that he axed himself!). And you could argue that investors treat voting on director elections - where the incumbent can actually be removed - differently to voting on remuneration reports, where the vote is advisory. But somehow these don't seem to me to be very satisfactory explanations, especially given the scale of the damage done at BP.