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Thames Water’s largest shareholder quits ‘with immediate effect’

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Thames Water’s largest shareholder has quit the board as a non-executive director “with immediate effect.”

Michael McNicholas, a director at Canadian pension fund Omers Infrastructure has announced he will stand down, the company also owns around a third of Kemble Water which is a parent company of the troubled water company.

There are concerns that Thames Water’s largest investors could cut investment and quit as directors as they are refusing to commit to over £3 billion which is needed to upgrade the infrastructure and help to clear up the debt, Sky News reported.

The company said, “This follows the announcement made on March 28 2024 that, based on the feedback provided by Ofwat to Thames Water to date, the regulatory arrangements that would be expected to apply to Thames Water make the … plan uninvestible.

“Thames Water continues to meet Ofwat’s expectation that independent non-executive directors form the largest single group on the board and the UK corporate governance code requirement that, excluding the chairman, independent non-executive directors make up at least half the board membership.”

In April Thames Water proposed to spend £1.1 billion and possibly a further £1.9 billion of investment and have warned their 16 million customers bills could soar by 44%.

The troubled water firm who services London and Thames Valley said their business plan over the next five years to 2030 will see spending surge to £19.8 billion.

Should Ofwat allow for Thames Water plans to go ahead customer bills could soar to £627 a year by 2030.

Liberal Democrat Treasury spokeswoman Sarah Olney said, “It would be an absolute disgrace if customers are forced to foot the bill for Thames Water’s shambolic failings.

“Ofwat cannot allow these bill hikes to go ahead.”

Jacob Rees-Mogg has furiously blasted Thames Water and said that Thames Water should “safely go bankrupt.”

Rees-Mogg said that the Water company who will not rule out their customers to pay a 40% rise that their assets should be “sold” to pay for their spiralling £15 billion in debts.

This comes as the chief executive of Thames Water, Chris Weston warned that if there is no funding by the end of 2025 then the company could enter into special administration, meaning that taxpayers will end up picking up the whopping bill.

The Tory MP Rees-Mogg wrote on X, “Thames Water may safely go bankrupt and the assets sold to meet its debts.

“In current circumstances any supplier to Thames Water should demand cash on delivery as they would usually be unsecured creditors in the event of an insolvency.”

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