A shareholder vote that management felt was vital finally passed for Nikola (NKLA -1.15%) yesterday. The stock jumped more than 5% on the news Wednesday morning. Those gains didn't hold, but shares were still up 3.5% as of 12:15 p.m. ET.
The electric and hydrogen-powered heavy truck maker asked shareholders for their support on four proposals at its annual meeting on June 1, 2022. While three of the proposals gained approval, one that asked for the ability to raise its outstanding share count from 600 million to 800 million faced opposition from one notable large shareholder.
Nikola reconvened the meeting several times, trying to gain enough votes to win approval over the objection of co-founder and former executive chairman Trevor Milton, who is currently under indictment for various charges of fraud. Milton has maintained his innocence, and voted his large number of shares against the proposal for the company to increase its share count. Nikola announced last night that enough shareholders have now voted in favor of the proposal to pass.
The company wants the ability to raise additional capital as it works to expand its business from battery electric semi trucks to include hydrogen-fueled versions. Earlier this week, Nikola announced it was acquiring battery pack supplier Romeo Power to help control its supply chain.
Nikola CEO Mark Russell said of the shareholder approval, "We're excited about the strong momentum we have generated heading into this critical period as we move forward on the production and delivery of battery-electric and hydrogen fuel cell trucks and the energy infrastructure to support them." Investors seem to agree, pushing the stock higher today.