The German-US auto giant DaimlerChrysler will face a protest by minority shareholders during its annual general assembly this week, an association of small investors warned in Berlin Monday, April 9.
The federative association of critical shareholders, an ecologically-minded group, said that three times as many small shareholders would refuse to approve proposals by the DaimlerChrysler board because of falling share prices and problems with restructuring the troubled Chrysler division.
The share has lost almost one half of its value since its high-water mark in January 1999. On Monday DaimlerChrysler shares traded for €53 on the Frankfurt stock market, a rise of 3.11 percent from their closing level on Friday.
The German association for share protection (DSW) and the association for the protection of small shareholders (SdK), the two most prominent shareholders' associations in Germany, have already announced they would withhold approval of board proposals.
The DSW charges that the Daimler board "neglected" the risks of a merger with Chrysler. But chairman Juergen Schrempp is still expected to obtain the confidence of a large majority of shareholders, analysts said.
Around 75 percent of the company's shares are held by institutional investors, with Deutsche Bank owning a 12-percent stake, and the government of Kuwait in possession of seven percent.
DaimlerChrysler is expected to announce the purchase from Swedish automaker Volvo of a 3.3-percent stake in Mitsubishi Motors (MMC), the fourth-biggest Japanese auto manufacturer.
The deal, worth more than €277 million ($250 million) according to press reports, would make DaimlerChrysler the majority shareholder in MMC with 37 percent of its stock. — (AFP, Berlin)
© Agence France Presse 2001
© 2001 Mena Report (www.menareport.com)