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Dissident Shareholder Goggin Wins Seat on Vermillion's Board of Directors

NEW YORK (GenomeWeb News) – Vermillion said in a US Securities and Exchange Commission filing released after the close of the market yesterday that its shareholders elected Robert Goggin to the company's board of directors at the firm's annual meeting last week.

Goggin, who was put forth as a candidate by a trio of dissident shareholders comprising himself, Gregory Novak, and George Bessenyei, defeated Vermillion's candidate, Roberta Della Vedova, with 4,749,042 votes cast for Goggin compared to 3,938,399 for Vedova.

Goggin's election is the culmination of a year-long attempt by the trio to influence Vermillion management by winning seats on the Austin, Texas-based company's board.

The shareholders initially took action against the company a year ago in a bid to get both Novak and Goggin on its board.

The group then sued Vermillion in May after the company changed its bylaws to eliminate one board seat. That lawsuit was dismissed in November, but the group has since filed an appeal, and last month the Supreme Court of the State of Delaware ruled could go forward.

In the meantime, Vermillion's annual meeting was placed in limbo, and Nasdaq warned the company in January that it was in violation of one of its listing rules because of the delay to the annual meeting.

Since Vermillion scheduled its annual meeting, the two sides have aggressively courted shareholders to vote for their nominees, and, in the weeks leading up to the election, the proxy voting advisory firms Institutional Shareholder Services and Glass Lewis recommended shareholders vote to elect Goggin.

In Wednesday morning trading on the Nasdaq, Vermillion shares were down around 3 percent at $1.17.

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