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Xmark Sends Letters to Icagen's Board of Directors: Questions Company's Leadership as Well as Motives Behind Adoption of Poison Pill
Date:1/20/2009

ly, the Company conditioned its disclosure of the Company's strategic plans upon our (i) essentially agreeing to lock-up the shares owned by the Xmark Funds (which we always have been willing to do) and (ii) agreeing to remain silent in the public market (including no proxy battle), for a period potentially extending through the next annual meeting (June 2009). The Company attempted to secure our silence. The proposed confidentiality agreements would have undermined a key purpose of our request -- to speak out and take action if we found that management and the Board are not acting responsibly and in the best interests of the Company's shareholders.

Rather than walk away from the table, we sought middle ground and responded to the Company's offer with a compromise in the alternative: (x) we would agree to lock up the shares owned by the Xmark Funds and remain silent in the public market through the next annual meeting if the Company allowed us to attend a single meeting of the Board or (y) we would agree to a lock up for a period of four (4) months, so that we would be able to speak at the next annual meeting. In our view, this was a reasonable compromise. We wanted a voice; the forum for our voice -- the marketplace or the boardroom -- was up to the Company. The Company flatly rejected this proposal.

From this experience, we believe that management and the Board have little or no interest in benefiting the Company's shareholders. The Company has taken action to quell public market activity in its shares, while also requesting silence from its most active shareholder. We continue to be amazed by the behavior of the Board, one that includes luminaries such as Dr. Charles A. Sanders, Lead Director of Genentech, Inc. [(DNA)], Anthony B. Evnin, Managing General Partner of Venrock Associates, and Dr. Dennis B. Gillings, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of Quintiles Transnational Corp., but, perha
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SOURCE Xmark Opportunity Partners, LLC
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