BASF Report 2021

Shareholders’ Rights

At a glance

  • Shareholders exercise rights of co-administration and supervision at Annual Shareholders’ Meeting
  • One share, one vote

Shareholders exercise their rights of co-administration and supervision at the Annual Shareholders’ Meeting, which usually takes place within the first five months of the business year. The Annual Shareholders’ Meeting elects half of the members of the Supervisory Board and, in particular, resolves on the formal discharge of the Board of Executive Directors and the Supervisory Board, the distribution of profits, capital measures, the authorization of share buybacks, changes to the Statutes and the selection of the auditor.

Each BASF SE share represents one vote. All of BASF SE’s shares are registered shares. Shareholders are obliged to have themselves entered with their shares into the company share register and to provide the information necessary for registration in the share register according to the German Stock Corporation Act. There are no registration restrictions and there is no limit to the number of shares that can be registered to one shareholder. Only the persons listed in the share register are entitled to vote as shareholders. Listed shareholders may exercise their voting rights at the Annual Shareholders’ Meeting either personally, through a representative of their choice or through a company-appointed proxy authorized by the shareholders to vote according to their instructions. Individual instructions are only forwarded to the company on the morning of the day of the Annual Shareholders’ Meeting. Voting rights can be exercised according to shareholders’ instructions by company-appointed proxies until the beginning of the voting process during the Annual Shareholders’ Meeting. There are neither voting caps to limit the number of votes a shareholder may cast nor special voting rights. BASF has fully implemented the principle of “one share, one vote.” All shareholders entered in the share register are entitled to participate in the Annual Shareholders’ Meetings, to have their say concerning any item on the agenda and to request information about company issues insofar as this is necessary to make an informed judgment about the item on the agenda under discussion. Registered shareholders are also entitled to file motions pertaining to proposals for resolutions made by the Board of Executive Directors and Supervisory Board at the Annual Shareholders’ Meeting and to contest resolutions of the Meeting and have them evaluated for their lawfulness in court. Shareholders who hold at least €500,000 of the company’s share capital, a quota corresponding to 390,625 shares, are furthermore entitled to request that additional items be added to the agenda of the Annual Shareholders’ Meeting.

Due to assembly restrictions resulting from the coronavirus pandemic, the 2021 Annual Shareholders’ Meeting again took place virtually without the physical presence of shareholders in accordance with special regulations prescribed by the German Act on Measures in Corporate Law, the Law of Cooperatives, Associations and Foundations and Residential Property Law to Combat the Effects of the COVID-19 Pandemic (GesRuaCOVBekG), which was passed by the lower house of the German parliament (Bundestag) in March 2020 and extended until the end of 2021 with few amendments. To ensure legally compliant execution of this special Annual Shareholders’ Meeting format, whereby shareholders participated solely via electronic communication, some of the aforementioned shareholder rights and options for action were limited or handled in an exceptional manner at this virtual meeting. After again being extended by the Bundestag, these special provisions are valid for Annual Shareholders’ Meetings until August 31, 2022, as well.