The AA is left on the roadside as hedge fund backer GLG ups its short position

Lucy White
The AA has seen revenues decline in recent years (Source: Flickr/Graham Richardson)

Breakdown agency the AA is finding itself increasingly abandoned by one of its original stock market backers, GLG Partners, as the hedge fund has upped its short position in the company.

GLG increased the percentage of shares it had shorted from 0.87 per cent to 1.52 per cent, as the AA's share price stalled last week after executive chairman Bob Mackenzie was fired for gross misconduct.

Read more: AA's share price slumps as it fires Bob Mackenzie for gross misconduct

But the AA has been trading below the 250p per share which it floated at three years ago for some time. GLG, which was one of the 10 cornerstone investors in the business, now seems to be making its money from betting against the AA.

Just days before Mackenzie was ousted, the hedge fund increased its short position from 0.87 per cent to 1.32 per cent. As the share price plummeted by 40.7p, GLG netted a tidy profit.

US investor AQR Capital Management also currently holds a short position of 1.01 per cent, while analysts at Liberum noted that the AA saw the largest build in short positions last week of any company on the London Stock Exchange.

Although the AA's recent troubles have made it a convenient time to short the company's shares, this is by no means the first time that GLG has gambled against the company.

Read more: AA scandal: Bob Mackenzie's son says his father resigned due to ill health and is in hospital

It had built up a 0.59 per cent short position by July 2015, when the share price was hovering at its peak of just over 400p. The largest position it ever held was 1.5 per cent in May this year, which it reduced to 1.41 per cent a couple of weeks later as the share price tumbled by 18.7p.

Since 2015, the hard shoulder saviour has seen its revenues decline. As of January this year, it was generating £933m.

Read more: AA share price rose five per cent after reversing falling membership trend

Related articles