Akzo Nobel's battle with PPG escalates amid push to oust chairman

Akzo Nobel's battle with PPG escalates amid push to oust chairman

Elliott Management Corp. has informed Akzo Nobel NV (AKZOY.PK,AKZOY) that it plans to call a shareholder meeting to try to oust the chairman of the company's supervisory board, according to reports. However, it also said that any attempt to remove chairman Antony Burgmans would be "irresponsible, disproportionate, damaging and not in the best interest of the Company, its shareholders and other stakeholders".

AFM confirmed it had received a complaint from Akzo but declined to comment on whether it would take any action.

Elliott Management owns 3.25% of the equity interest in Akzo Nobel via its United Kingdom division.

"Akzo Nobel is sending a signal that it will use all means to avert the takeover", said Theodoor Gilissen analyst Joost van Beek. However, last month, USA -based Causeway Capital Management LLC - Akzo's largest shareholder with about a 6.7% stake - called on Akzo to start negotiations with PPG.

Akzo said it turned to the Dutch financial regulator after it became aware Tuesday that Elliott meant to share with PPG potentially price-sensitive information about the demand.

More news: US Threatens More Pressure on Syria After Missile Strikes

PPG "has always maintained its strict and long-standing policy of not sharing any material, non-public information and has acted in compliance with applicable laws and regulations, including those of the Netherlands, with respect to communications with any shareholders", it said.

Elliott said it and affiliates hold a stake in Akzo Nobel of more than 3 percent, and it's backed in calling for an EGM by investors holding more than 10 percent.

In a response to the allegations, sent to TheStreet by an Elliott spokesperson, the group said that "as one of the top 20 shareholders of Akzo Nobel, Elliott has, as a matter of course, met and communicated with PPG".

For its part, PPG said Wednesday "there are now no agreements or arrangements, in whatever form, between PPG and Elliott Advisors".

Elliott wants Akzo to consider a $26.3 billion takeover bid from Pittsburgh, Pa. -based PPG Industries and thinks Burgmans is blocking the deal.

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