AkzoNobel triumphs over activist investor Elliott Advisors in Dutch legal battle

William Turvill
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AkzoNobel has rejected three takeover offers from PPG Industries (Source: Getty)

Dutch paints firm AkzoNobel has scored a legal victory over activist investor Elliott Advisors as it fends off an unwanted US takeover approach.

A Netherlands court ruled that Akzo, which makes Dulux paint, was not required to hold an extraordinary shareholder meeting requested by investors including Elliott.

The hedge fund is leading an investor charge on Akzo over its rejections of three takeover bids from PPG Industries, the last of which was worth €26.9bn (£23.4bn).

Read more: Court case to oust AkzoNobel chairman begins

Last month, Akzo rejected a call by Elliott and other investors for the firm to hold a meeting to vote on the proposed dismissal of its chairman Antony Burgmans.

Elliott then launched a legal challenge, arguing that Akzo should be forced the hold the meeting.

Elliott said:

Elliott is surprised and disappointed with the Enterprise Chamber’s ruling this evening. Elliott is considering the implications of this judgment for shareholder rights in the Netherlands and for its next steps in relation to AkzoNobel.

Read more: AkzoNobel takeover saga rumbles on: Another shareholder is unhappy

AkzoNobel welcomed the ruling, saying: "AkzoNobel is very pleased that the Enterprise Chamber has decided that its boards have acted in accordance with the highest standards of Dutch corporate governance and confirms the position of the chairman.

"The ruling dismisses all the requests of Elliott.

"AkzoNobel will continue to have a constructive dialogue with its shareholders."

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