Voting cap considered for EADS – chairman in paper


The outgoing chairman of European aerospace group EADS proposed instituting a cap on voting rights, effectively a poison pill to protect the company from hostile bidders and preserve state influence.

“That would be a good defence mechanism,” EADS Chairman Bodo Uebber said in an interview with German business daily Handelsblatt, declining to quantify where the voting cap might be.
“It would be conceived of as a safety net, in case the anchor shareholders further reduce their stake,” said the executive, who is also the finance chief of EADS stakeholder Daimler AG, Reuters reports.

One of the founders of EADS, Daimler plans to sell a 7.5 percent equity interest in the company to German state development bank KfW next year.

The deal will preserve a delicate Franco-German balance of power, leaving Daimler with 7.5 percent of EADS, plus voting rights for a further 7.5 percent held by a consortium of financial investors.

Lagardere (LAGA.PA) and the French state own another 22.5 percent.