19 – Capital, reserves and retained earnings

Authorized capital

At the Annual Shareholders’ Meeting on May 2, 2014, shareholders authorized the Board of Executive Directors, with the approval of the Supervisory Board, to increase the subscribed capital by issuing new registered shares up to a total of €500 million against cash or contributions in kind through May 1, 2019. The Board of Executive Directors is empowered, following the approval of the Supervisory Board, to decide on the exclusion of shareholders’ subscription rights for these new shares in certain predefined cases covered by the enabling resolution. Until now, this option has not been exercised and no new shares have been issued.

BASF SE has only issued fully paid-up registered shares with no par value. There are no preferences or other restrictions. BASF SE does not hold any treasury shares.

Reserves and retained earnings

Capital surplus includes effects from BASF’s share program, premiums from capital increases and consideration for warrants and negative goodwill from the capital consolidation resulting from acquisitions of subsidiaries in exchange for the issue of BASF SE shares at par value.

Million €


Dec. 31, 2015

Dec. 31, 2014

Legal reserves




Other retained earnings




Retained earnings




Transfers from other retained earnings increased legal reserves by €60 million in 2015 (2014: €46 million).

Due to the disposal of the 25% share in SolVin to partner Solvay, of parts of the pharmaceutical ingredient business to Siegfried Holding AG, Zofingen, Switzerland, and the asset swap with Gazprom, an amount of €68 million resulting from the remeasurement of defined benefit plans was transferred from other comprehensive income into retained earnings.

The acquisition of shares in companies which BASF already controls or includes as a joint arrangement in the Consolidated Financial Statements is treated as a transaction between shareholders, as long as this does not lead to a change in the consolidation method. There were no transactions of this type in 2015, as in the previous year.

Payment of dividends

In accordance with the resolution of the Annual Shareholders’ Meeting on April 30, 2015, BASF SE paid a dividend of €2.80 per share from the retained profit of the 2014 fiscal year. With 918,478,694 shares entitled to dividends, this amounts to a total dividend payout of €2,571,740,343.20.