Durability + Design
Follow us on Twitter Follow us on LinkedIn Like us on Facebook Follow us on Instagram Visit the TPC Store
Search the site

 

Advertisement

Durability + Design (D+D)


D+D News

Main News Page


Shareholder Turmoil Heats Up at AkzoNobel

Tuesday, May 16, 2017

More items for Good Technical Practice

Comment | More

Shareholders of Dutch coatings giant AkzoNobel are raising concerns amid the company’s rejection of rival PPG Industries’ third merger proposal earlier this month.

The Letter

Before that decision was made public on May 8, members of top 20 shareholder Tweedy, Browne Company LLC penned a letter to AkzoNobel’s supervisory board chair Antony Burgmans on May 4 berating the company for its decisions regarding PPG and a perceived lack of transparency in those decisions.

“Being shareholders for 25 years has unfortunately not been a fruitful experience and our patience is wearing thin,” the letter says in its introduction.

Photos: AkzoNobel

Shareholders of Dutch coatings giant AkzoNobel are raising concerns amid the company’s third rejection of rival PPG Industries’ third merger proposal earlier this month.

The American fund managing company accused AkzoNobel of hypocrisy, highlighting the companies that it has acquired and asking, “Why is the reverse problematic? Is this the (in)famous and self-defined 'level playing field'? Or is this asymmetrical capitalism in the fashion of Orwell, where different rules apply to different players? Is buying more acceptable than being bought?”

The letter concluded with a graph on the PPG decisions, saying, “There are no valid reasons left for Akzo Nobel to not at least talk to PPG. It owes no less to everybody involved. The decision not to proceed can still be made but it would of course require transparency and a detailed explanation rather than qualitative smoke and mirrors.”

A similar sentiment was expressed by PPG when the rejection of its “third and final” offer had been announced. Although CEO Ton Büchner and Burgmans met with PPG Chairman and CEO Michael McGarry and Lead Independent Director Hugh Grant, PPG said in its statement that the meeting was rushed and that AkzoNobel executives stated up front that “they did not have the intent nor the authority to negotiate.”

AkzoNobel says that CEO Ton Büchner (pictured, left) and Supervisory Board Chair Antony Burgmans (right) met with PPG Chairman and CEO Michael McGarry and Lead Independent Director Hugh Grant.

AkzoNobel, meanwhile, has maintained that they have thought carefully about the proposal, though the first two offers were dismissed almost immediately. The company has also come to the defense of Burgmans, despite shareholders calling for an extraordinary general meeting to vote him out.

Going to Court

That charge was led by Elliott Advisors, which has since begun legal proceedings in an attempt to remove Burgmans. The investor filed a petition with the Enterprise Chamber—the division of the Amsterdam Court of Appeal that deals with corporate affairs—on May 9. The goal is to force AkzoNobel to hold the EGM that they had refused Elliott and vote.

“Akzo Nobel’s board continues to demonstrate a disturbing and inexplicable tendency to act in their own, self-entrenching interests and against the interests of shareholders and other stakeholders,” Elliott said.

“Elliott filed a petition ... to enforce the rights of Akzo Nobel’s shareholders to hold the requested EGM to vote on the dismissal of Mr. Burgmans for failing to discharge his fiduciary and corporate governance duties.”

A request to AkzoNobel for comment was not returned by Monday afternoon (May 15).

   

Tagged categories: AkzoNobel; Business matters; Mergers; Personnel; PPG

Comment from Jesse Melton, (5/16/2017, 8:11 AM)

Tweedy, Browne own 3% of AkzoNobel outstanding shares. They have a voice, but it's not a loud one. Elliott Advisers, who were rebuffed in their call for a special meeting to out Burgmans. Now they're trying to arrange an adjudicated meeting with the same goal. The proceedings are not expected to go to a hearing.

I realize this article is just a wire service story, but it's worded in a way that makes it appear significant numbers of voting shareholders are in favor of the PPG deal, and that's simply not the case.


Comment Join the Conversation:

Sign in to our community to add your comments.

Advertisements
 
KTA-Tator, Inc. - Corporate Office
 
New KTA Pipeline Inspection Kit
 
• Defelsko standard memory body
• Positector FTS 0-250 mils, cabled dry film thickness probe
• NEW Positector Shore D hardness probe
• All essential inspection equipment!
Visit www.ktagage.com
 

 
PPG Paints
 
PPG PAINTS™ SPEEDHIDE® INTERIOR LATEX
 
This high-hiding, low-VOC, low-odor paint enables a space to be painted while occupied and delivers the durable product performance professionals require.
 

 
Digital Facilities Corporation
 
Manage the Building Envelope
 
FM-Pro™ is designed to inventory and manage Building Envelope asset information and is suited for building owners, asset area consultants, and product suppliers.
 

 
Atlas Material Testing Technology
 
Helping You Put Your Products To The Test
 
  • Outdoor Accelerated Weathering
  • Laboratory Testing Services
  • Accelerated Weathering Instruments

  • www.atlas-mts.com
    atlas.info@ametek.com
 

 
World of Concrete
 
WOC 2018 – Las Vegas, NV
 
Visit the WOC website for more details about the World of Concrete 2018: January 23-26; Seminars 22-26 at the Las Vegas Convention Center in Las Vegas, NV, USA.
 

 
International Roofing Expo
 
IRE 2018
 
Attend the IRE where exhibitors and education offer serious solutions, real results and opportunities to make powerful connections. Register for FREE Expo.
 

 
A&I Coatings
 
Seal n Peel Strippable Coatings
 
Protect your assets with Seal n Peel. Easy to apply and remove. Can be left on for up to 12 months. Water based, enviro mentally friendly.
 

 
EMME Controls
 
EMME (Energy Management Made Easy)
 
We are a manufacturer of a temperature control & energy management system which works with most any existing heating & cooling equipment, providing significant value/impact as it relates to comfort & energy savings.
 

 
 
 

Technology Publishing Co., 1501 Reedsdale Street, Suite 2008, Pittsburgh, PA 15233

TEL 1-412-431-8300  • FAX  1-412-431-5428  •  EMAIL webmaster@durabilityanddesign.com


The Technology Publishing Network

Durability + Design PaintSquare the Journal of Protective Coatings & Linings Paint BidTracker

 

© Copyright 2012-2017, Technology Publishing Co., All rights reserved