The company is being pushed by the hedge fund Third Point, which has a stake in Shell and is trying to push through fundamental changes. He argues, for example, that simplifying the corporate structure will mean that the company will be able to achieve higher profits, and thus bring better results to shareholders. Third Point also suggested that Shell split into several smaller companies. But Shell’s management went on the counterattack, saying he believed his business was working better when all parts of the group were together.
Shell, like other major oil companies in Europe, has set a goal of phasing out hydrocarbons to meet growing environmental demands. He lost a dispute with climate activists in the spring, and a court in The Hague ordered the company to reduce its global carbon emissions by 45 percent by the end of 2030 compared to 2019. The company plans to invest more in solar and wind energy, defending itself against the court verdict.
The company’s move to unify the stock classes will mean that a larger volume of common stock will be created, which Shell will then be able to buy more easily if it deems it appropriate. However, the company’s shares will continue to be traded on the stock exchanges in Amsterdam, London and New York, as before.
“The simplification is designed to strengthen Shell’s competitiveness and accelerate both the payment of money to shareholders and the strategy of becoming a zero-emission company,” the company said. “The current complex equity structure is subject to constraints and may no longer be suitable in the long run.”
The proposal requires the consent of at least 75 percent of shareholders. The company convened a general meeting, which will be held on December 10 in Rotterdam. However, the Dutch government is not satisfied with the proposed changes.
“We are discussing with Shell’s management the impact of this plan on jobs, key investment decisions and overall operations,” said Economy Minister Stef Blok, who is also responsible for environmental protection. According to him, the company assured the government that only a few top managers and members of the management team would move to Britain.
Unilever, which specializes in consumer goods, also decided to terminate the so-called dual share structure last year. She also decided to give preference to Britain over the Netherlands.