Bluesky directors fling silver, stem bloodbath

That was after Blue Sky had fallen another 19.9 per cent from $5.62 to $4.50 before lunch, until the company began lodging notices that its directors had been buying stock. It was enough to stem the panic – even though some of the outlay involved was either token or confused, at least for a conviction signal. Former Perpetual and Schroders Australia CIO Michael Gordon paid $85,480 for 10,000 shares when Blue Sky emerged from its halt on Wednesday. But on Thursday, he bought only 5000 shares, for a total consideration of $34,989. Hardly backing the truck up. And if you like it at $8.55, shouldn’t you absolutely love it at $6.99?

Phil Hennessy (AO, for services to accounting – no kidding) dropped $42,187 for 5000 shares on Wednesday at an average price of $8.43.

On Thursday though, when the price closed at $5.62, how many did the board’s audit committee chairman buy? Not one.

Hennessy and Gordon are the company’s only independent non-executive directors. Executive directors Tim Wilson and Kim Morison (both recent sellers) didn’t buy. Neither did Elaine Stead (whose harebrained social media hectoring by socially maladroit short seller John Hempton is supposed to somehow strike out the gaping holes in Blue Sky’s accounting methodology?) or Nicholas Dignam. Not cheap enough for them yet?

James Chandler, a private client adviser at Blue Sky’s house broker Morgans, had some free advice for us late on Thursday evening. "You write about Bluesky (sic) like your long held views have finally been validated. You should be writing like you read a short research thesis last week and learned what the company does for the first time, which is no doubt much closer to the truth."

Sorry, Jimmy C, but here’s a little chestnut from our (calendar) 2017 year in review, published back on December 21: "we’re keeping a gimlet eye on [among others] Brisbane-based Blue Sky Alternative Investments. Never invest where the palm trees grow." But we’re just a Glaucus patsy, right?

The boy wonder from Barcaldine continues thus: "I am an adviser at Morgans but have no exposure to the stock and nothing to lose personally from this. I am, however, a good mate of Rob’s who I rate as highly as anyone I know in terms of his character and integrity. A couple of traits that are probably a little foreign to you." To his credit, that last insult is absolutely defensible by virtue of its comprehensive truth.

As for Shand’s pending sainthood, we’ll wait and see where that lands. As for the Chandlermeister’s pure white independence, we note his profile on Morgans’ website: "My employer remunerates me as your adviser by way of percentage of fees. As a shareholder of Morgans, I may be entitled to a share of profits. I am eligible to participate in a bonus scheme depending upon performance." No exposure whatsoever then for this bloke, besides the ECM and advisory fees paid by Blue Sky that feed into the profit and bonus pools (I mean, who listed this thing?) and the direct commission paid by clients on any Blue Sky trades. What a philanthropic investment coach he’s being, one at a broker that only last month sold its poor clients Blue Sky scrip at $11.50 a pop.