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Shareholders’ participation rights

Voting rights restrictions and representation

The Articles of Association can be found on the company website under Corporate Governance. The following are references to selected relevant articles:

  • share ledger, restrictions on transferability and registration (Article 5)
  • powers of the Annual General Meeting (Article 6)
  • convening/agenda of the Annual General Meeting (Article 8)
  • voting rights and adoption of resolutions, independent voting rights proxy and issuing instructions (Article 10, 11 and 12)
  • special quorums (Article 13)
  • remuneration of the Board of Directors and Executive Board (Article 19)

The texts of certain provisions within the Articles of Association are presented in the following section:

Voting rights restrictions and representation

Each share entitles the holder to one vote. The transferability of the shares is restricted pursuant to Article 5 of the Articles of Association. For details on the restrictions on transferability, see the Capital structure chapter in this Corporate Governance Section under “Restrictions on transferability and nominee registration”. Other than this, there are no restrictions.

Investis recognises only one proxy per share. A shareholder may represent himself at the General Meeting or appoint a proxy, who need not be a shareholder but must present a written proxy form, or arrange to be represented by the independent proxy. The officer presiding over the General Meeting decides whether individual instances of representation are permissible. Investis ensures that the shareholders can issue their powers of attorney and instructions to the independent proxy, including by electronic means, up until 4 p.m. of the second working day prior to the date of the General Meeting. Compliance with the submission deadline for powers of attorney and instructions is determined by the time at which they are received by the independent proxy. The Board of Directors determines the procedure for electronically issuing powers of attorney and instructions.

Powers of attorney and instructions may be issued only for the upcoming General Meeting.

Special quorum

A resolution by the General Meeting passed with both a minimum of two thirds of the votes represented and the absolute majority of the nominal value of the shares represented shall be required in order to

  • amend official purpose of Investis;
  • introduce shares with preferential voting rights;
  • restrict the transferability of registered shares;
  • carry out any authorised or conditional capital increase;
  • carry out a capital increase funded by equity capital in consideration of contributions in kind or to fund acquisitions in kind and the granting of special rights;
  • restrict or cancel subscription rights;
  • relocate the registered office of the Company;
  • dissolve the Company;
  • or as prescribed otherwise by law.

Convocation of the general meeting 

The General Meeting is convened by the Board of Directors or, if necessary, by the auditors. Liquidators are also entitled to convene the General Meeting.

The General Meeting is convened by publishing a notice to the shareholders in the Company’s official publications or by written invitation sent to the shareholders registered in the share ledger not less than 20 days before the date of the meeting. The notice of the General Meeting must contain, in addition to stating the date, time and place of the General Meeting, the agenda as well as motions proposed by the Board of Directors and any shareholders who requested the General Meeting or exercised their right to add an item to the agenda.

Subject to the provisions governing a Universal General Meeting (Universalversammlung), resolutions may not be passed on any agenda items not announced in this way except where they relate to convening an Extraordinary General Meeting or carrying out a Special General Meeting at the request of a shareholder. However, no prior notification is required for the submission of motions as part of the agenda items and for deliberations not for resolutions.

The Board of Directors must call an Extraordinary General Meeting within 20 days of being requested to do so by a written notice submitted by shareholders representing at least 10 per cent of the share capital and specifying the business to be conducted and the motions to be put before the General Meeting.

The Annual Report, the Compensation Report and the Auditors’ Report must be made available for inspection by shareholders at Investis’ registered office no later than 20 days before the Annual General Meeting. A note must be included in the invitation to the General Meeting informing shareholders to this effect and of their right to request that these documents be sent to them.

Inclusion of items on the agenda

Shareholders who represent at least 10 per cent of the share capital may submit items for inclusion on the agenda. The request must be received by Investis at least 40 days before the General Meeting.

Entries in the share ledger

All shareholders entered in the share ledger as shareholders with voting rights up to three working days before a General Meeting may vote at the meeting concerned. Shareholders who sell their shares before the General Meeting takes place are no longer entitled to vote. Shareholders who buy additional shares or sell part of their shareholding after their meeting admission card has been issued must exchange the card sent to them at the information desk on arriving at the meeting concerned.

The Board of Directors may refuse to register persons domiciled abroad within the meaning of the Federal law of 16 December 1983 on the Acquisition of Real Estate by Persons Abroad (BewG) in the share ledger if such registration could impede the Company in providing the required proof that Investis and/or subsidiaries are under Swiss control.

The Board of Directors has the power to issue regulations on the maintenance of the share ledger and to specify registration requirements and restrictions, in particular requirements concerning the proof of a person’s acquisition and holding of shares in their own name and for their own account, the percentage limits applicable to registration of persons domiciled abroad in total and for persons domiciled abroad acting individually, jointly or in association, and rules governing the distribution of free allocations to foreigners.

As at 31 December 2016, a regulation was in place to restrict the cumulative shareholding of persons domiciled abroad to 30% of the voting rights. This regulation is within the meaning of the Federal law of 16 December 1983 on the Acquisition of Real Estate by Persons Abroad (BewG).