Norway’s sovereign fund will vote to support Bayer management

The so-termed ‘Chempark’, the primary plant and headquarters of German pharmaceutical and chemical maker Bayer AG is pictured along the river Rhine in Leverkusen, Germany, April 27, 2020. REUTERS/Wolfgang Rattay

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OSLO, April 24 (Reuters) – Norway’s $1.3 trillion wealth fund will vote upcoming 7 days to support prime administration at German drug and farm merchandise maker Bayer AG (BAYGn.DE), but will vote from the remuneration offer of CEO Werner Baumann, it claimed on Sunday.

Shareholders will vote on April 29 at Bayer’s once-a-year basic meeting on irrespective of whether or not to ratify the executive board’s organization carry out all through 2021, a standard treatment at German AGMs.

The Norwegian fund owned 2.27% of Bayer’s shares at the stop of 2021, valued at $1.19 billion, producing it the company’s fifth greatest shareholder according to Refinitiv details.

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“The board is dependable for attracting the right CEO and location correct remuneration,” Norges Lender Financial commitment Management (NBIM), which operates the fund, reported in a assertion.

It cited the have to have for a “significant proportion of annual remuneration” to be offered as shares locked in for five to 10 years, transparency to prevent “unacceptable outcomes” and that all positive aspects ought to have a apparent business rationale.

Although the AGM vote is mostly symbolic, with no bearing on management’s liability or tenure, it is nonetheless witnessed as a crucial gauge of investor sentiment.

Baumann, whose contract as CEO operates until eventually 2024, is under pressure to strengthen return on investment which has been lagging that of its rivals subsequent the $63 billion takeover of agri enterprise Monsanto in 2018. browse far more

Bayer’s shares tumbled in the months that followed the acquisition when jurors identified Monsanto liable in many U.S. lawsuits for not warning of alleged most cancers pitfalls linked to its weedkiller Roundup.

The Norwegian fund joined a majority of shareholders at the 2019 AGM in rebuking Bayer’s management, but did, nevertheless, give its backing to Baumann and his group for the subsequent two many years.

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Reporting by Terje Solsvik, modifying by Gwladys Fouche and Emelia Sithole-Matarise

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