Royal Dutch Shell plc .com Rotating Header Image

Posts from ‘June, 2004’

sg.biz.yahoo.com: Shell New Zealand Approves Pohokura Gas Field

sg.biz.yahoo.com: Shell New Zealand Approves Pohokura Gas Field

Edited Press Release

Wednesday June 30, 5:56 PM

LONDON (Dow Jones)–Shell New Zealand said Wednesday that it has formally given the green light to the development of the Pohokura gas field, when it signed off the Final Investment Decision (FID).

Shell New Zealand Exploration and Production Commercial Manager Ajit Bansal said Shell was still anticipating first gas to flow from Pohokura in mid 2006.

“We are confident that the project is on track to deliver first gas in mid 2006. Given New Zealand’s critical need for more gas, Shell is very aware that Pohokura needs to be up and running in a timely manner”, he said.

read more

AccountingWEB.com: Pension Funds Sue Shell Seeking Damages, Governance Changes

AccountingWEB.com: Pension Funds Sue Shell Seeking Damages, Governance Changes

Posted 30 June 04

Two pension funds filed suit Friday against more than two dozen directors and officers of the Royal Dutch/Shell Group and their accounting and audit firms PricewaterhouseCoopers International and KPMG International.

The suit follows the company downgrading its proven oil and natural gas reserves four times since Jan. 9. The company reduced reserves as of Dec. 31, 2002 by about 23 percent, or 4.47 billion barrels of oil equivalent. Reserves are an important measure of an oil company’s performance and future value, as the amount represents how much oil and gas the company expects to commercially pump to the surface.

read more

Expatica News: Shell: 85pc of written off reserves exist

Expatica News: Shell: 85pc of written off reserves exist

30 June 2004

AMSTERDAM — Shell chairman Jeroen van der Veer expects that 85 percent of the oil reserves the Anglo-Dutch energy company wrote off earlier this year will later be restored to the multinational’s accounts.

The Dutchman said at a shareholders meeting in Scheveningen this week that the oil reserves exist, but are not listed in order to comply with US accountancy regulations.

Despite this, 40 percent of the shareholders refused to back the management board’s policy. Large investors such as the pension fund ABP and US and British institutes came out and opposed Shell policy direction.

read more

New York Times: Oil Firms Differ with on SEC Gas Reserves

New York Times: Oil Firms Differ with on SEC Gas Reserves

By REUTERS

Published: June 29, 2004

Posted 30 June 04

LONDON/OSLO (Reuters) – The oil and gas reserves controversy sparked by Royal Dutch/Shell’s shock January downgrade took a new turn on Tuesday as two of Shell’s partners in a Norwegian gas field differed over reserves bookings.

The divergence emerged despite months of talks between the companies and U.S. regulator the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) to try to iron out confusions over what can and cannot be booked as “proved” reserves.

read more

Business Day: Grindrod, BP and Shell in R350m BEE deal

Business Day: Grindrod, BP and Shell in R350m BEE deal

By Lynn Bolin

30 June 04

Listed South African shipping group Grindrod Ltd (GND) and its subsidiary Unicorn Shipping have teamed up with global oil giants BP and Shell to facilitate a 350 million rand empowerment deal for black empowerment shipping group Southern Tankers.

The deal includes the purchase of a new 250 million rand oil tanker and a three- year charter contract valued at R100 million to transport oil along the south and east African coasts.

Southern Tankers is 50% owned by Grindrod and 50% owned by black empowerment group Dudula Shipping, and was set up in 2001 to provide a platform to offer shipping transport services to the South African petrochemical and marine industry.

read more

Shell Survives Shareholder Rebellion

Planet Ark: Shell Survives Shareholder Rebellion

“Not only has Shell been overstating its oil reserves, it has exaggerated its social and environmental performance too”

UK: June 30, 2004

THE HAGUE/LONDON – Embattled oil giant Royal Dutch/Shell survived a shareholder rebellion this week, but not before almost 40 percent of its Dutch stock was voted against key resolutions at the annual general meeting.

Investors gathered in The Hague were asked to agree that Royal Dutch managing directors and its supervisory board “be discharged of responsibility in respect of their management for the year 2003.”

Usually such a vote would be carried almost unanimously, but Monday’s vote saw only 60 percent in favor. Shareholders at a twin meeting in London also showed their disapproval of the disastrous year of reserves downgrades and high-level executive firings. Almost 10 percent of Shell stock was voted against approving executive pay for the year.

read more

Ormen Lange highlights broader issues

Financial Times: Ormen Lange highlights broader issues

“in the wake of the scandal at Royal Dutch/Shell”

By James Boxell

Jun 30, 2004

BP’s share of the Ormen Lange gas field is estimated to be worth the equivalent of 180m barrels of oil – a drop in the ocean for a company that yesterday confirmed it had 18.4bn barrels of proved total reserves.

But given the current obsession with reserves in the wake of the scandal at Royal Dutch/Shell, which overbooked its reserves by more than 20 per cent, the Norwegian field has acquired a significance far beyond its size.

It captures in microcosm the confusion over how companies report their reserves to the SEC.

read more

BP has more in reserve

The Independent: BP has more in reserve

“prompting CSFB to advise a switch out of Royal Dutch Shell”

Tue 29 June 2004

By Phill Cozens, Stockmarket Correspondent

BP improves 5p to 495p as it reports a 23 million barrel rise in proved reserves, prompting CSFB to advise a switch out of Royal Dutch Shell, 4p lower at 413p, while the lower crude price helps British Airways to another 5p rise to 278p, with JP Morgan upgrading its rating to overweight from neutral.

Shell Says SEC Questioned 30 In Reserves Probe

The Wall Street Journal: Shell Says SEC Questioned 30 In Reserves Probe

Investigators from the SEC and the Justice Department have teamed up in the probe”

By ALMAR LATOUR, MARK LONG and CHIP CUMMINS

Staff Reporters of THE WALL STREET JOURNAL

June 29, 2004; Page A2

Posted 30 June 04

Royal Dutch/Shell Group said 30 employees have been questioned by the Securities and Exchange Commission regarding the oil company’s massive overstatement of energy reserves this year.

Investigators from the SEC and the Justice Department have teamed up in the probe and are expected to request interviews with dozens of additional current and former Shell executives.

In a contrite appearance before angry shareholders yesterday at the annual meeting of Shell’s Dutch parent company, Jeroen van der Veer, Shell’s chairman, said he was surprised to learn that the number of executives interviewed in the probe was as high as it was. He said he wasn’t aware of the status of the SEC and the Justice Department investigations and said he hadn’t received an invitation to be interviewed by either agency. He declined to comment on whether he expected to be asked to appear.

read more

BP, Norsk-Hydro Differ in Booking Field’s Reserves

The Wall Street Journal: BP, Norsk-Hydro Differ in Booking Field’s Reserves

By CHIP CUMMINS

Staff Reporter of THE WALL STREET JOURNAL

June 30, 2004; Page A2

LONDON — Further muddying the water for energy investors, two large European companies took drastically different tacks in booking reserves from the same natural-gas field after months of discussion with U.S. regulators.

In its annual filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission, BP PLC retained all of its previously booked reserves of 209.1 million barrels of oil equivalent from the Ormen Lange field offshore Norway. But Norsk Hydro ASA slashed its bookings from the field by 102 million barrels to 234 million. Both companies are partners in the large natural-gas project.

read more

Investors stunned by Shell revelation

Daily Telegraph: Investors stunned by Shell revelation

By Christopher Hope, Business Correspondent (Filed: 30/06/2004)

Major shareholders in Shell, the Anglo-Dutch oil giant, yesterday reacted with astonishment to the news that Shell’s Dutch chairman knew there was a problem with its reserves two months before its British chairman was told.

Aad Jacobs told shareholders at Royal Dutch’s annual meeting in the Netherlands that he was told there was a problem in November last year by Walter Van der Vijver, the head of exploration and production who was later fired.

read more

BP torments Shell with oil reserves revision

The Independent: BP torments Shell with oil reserves revision

By Michael Harrison, Business Editor

30 June 2004

BP admitted yesterday that it too had misled investors about the size of its oil and gas reserves. Unlike its rival Shell, however, BP has been underestimating them.

In a filing to the US Securities and Exchange Commission, BP said that its proved reserves were 23 million barrels higher than stated in the company’s 2003 annual report and were now estimated to be 18.361 billion barrels. The announcement, coming just a day after shareholders in Shell attacked the “abysmal” performance of their company, served to highlight again the gulf between the two oil producers. Brokers at the investment bank CSFB advised investors to switch out of Shell and into BP.

read more

BP surprises with upward adjustment

Financial Times: BP surprises with upward adjustment

By James Boxell in London

Jun 30, 2004

BP yesterday surprised the markets with a slight upward adjustment of its estimates of reserves. Europe’s biggest oil group had to recalculate its UK-approved figures to bring them into line with US Securities and Exchange Commission guidelines.

The issue of oil reserves has become a hot topic since Royal Dutch/Shell was forced to cut its own estimates by more than 20 per cent this year.

Shell is expected to file its revised reserve figures with the SEC today, although no more nasty surprises are expected.

read more

JUNE 2004 ROYAL DUTCH SHELL NEWS

Still Shell-shocked

The Independent: Still Shell-shocked: “a company which is obviously still in denial”

They went to listen to Big Ron, but sadly, answers came there none. No one expected the chairman of Shell Transport & Trading, Lord Oxburgh (Ron, apparently, to his fellow directors) to have the mating habits of the grey whale at his fingertips or the precise geography of the Niger delta committed to memory.

But it wasn’t only the environmentalists who turned up at yesterday’s annual meeting that found themselves entering an information-free zone. Ordinary investors seeking a glimpse of the new-look streamlined, simplified and transparent Shell also went away none the wiser.

read more

The Independent: Investors lambast Shell over ousted chairman’s £1m pay-off

The Independent: Investors lambast Shell over ousted chairman’s £1m pay-off

the £1.06m pay-off for Sir Philip Watts proved that, even under new leadership, the company was still living in “a parallel universe”

By Michael Harrison, Business Editor

29 June 2004

Shell received a mauling yesterday from shareholders over the “scandal” of the £1m pay-off for its disgraced former chairman, its “abject” environmental record and its cumbersome dual board structure.

Shareholders attending the annual meetings of the Anglo-Dutch oil giant in London and The Hague, tore into the company over the fiasco of last January’s reserves downgrade, linking it directly to the lack of accountability and transparency at board level.

read more

Dutch circus act stretches out to a record six hours

The Independent: Dutch circus act stretches out to a record six hours

“Appropriately, the Dutch shareholders’ meeting was held in the Circus theatre”

By Guy Thornton

29 June 2004

Appropriately, the Dutch shareholders’ meeting was held in the Circus theatre in the seaside resort of Scheveningen, near to The Hague.

Appropriate, as the meeting had much of the circus about it. The unexpectedly large number of shareholders turning up, some 1,700, delayed the meeting and meant there were not enough voting machines to go round, which would lead to more chaos later. Then, when the meeting got going, the constant procession of awkward questions meant that the meeting – normally two or three hours – ran for more than double even the longest previous time.

read more

The Times: Masters of understatement

The Times: Masters of understatement

“Today Credit Suisse First Boston was advising investors to switch to BP instead of Shell despite BP’s being 80p more costly than Shell’s”

BP was too humble today when it dismissed a 23 million barrel write-up in its reserves as “immaterial”.

By Mike Verdin

June 29, 2004

Sometimes less is more. A David can beat a Goliath. A few well-chosen words can achieve greater effect than a snooze-making oration.

Mervyn King, the Bank of England Governor, showed as much two weeks ago when a few comments at the end of a 2,000-word speech re-ignited the national debate on house prices. And separately, Stuart Rose must wish that he had never had that brief phone conversation with Philip Green last month just before buying 100,000 shares in Marks & Spencer.

read more

Investors snub Shell in vote on liability

The Times: Investors snub Shell in vote on liability

“Pointing to Sir Mark Moody-Stuart, a former chairman of Shell’s CMD who sits on the Shell Transport board, Mr Pal said: “When this scandal came up, Sir Mark was present. Why did he allow this departure from Shell’s business principles? He should resign from all his other directorships.”

By Carl Mortished, International Business Editor

June 29, 2004

SHELL’S directors yesterday suffered a humiliating rebuff in the Netherlands when investors in Royal Dutch Petroleum, representing almost 40 per cent of the Dutch holding company’s shares, voted against discharging the directors from liability.

The annual resolution to discharge managing directors and supervisory board directors is normally a formality at Royal Dutch meetings, but a number of Dutch pension funds yesterday took the chance to express anger over the misreporting of 4.5 billion barrels of oil and gas reserves.

read more

Toronto Star: Oil giant’s brass beg for pardon and time

Toronto Star: Oil giant’s brass beg for pardon and time: Contrition expressed at Royal Dutch/Shell: Reserve-booking fiasco stays at centre stage

Jun. 29, 2004.

LONDON—Royal Dutch/Shell Group’s top brass, chastened by this year’s reserves-booking fiasco, have begged shareholders for forgiveness and time to revamp the Anglo-Dutch oil giant.

At twin annual general meetings yesterday in The Hague and London, board members of the parent companies, Royal Dutch Petroleum Co. and Shell Transport & Trading Co., were pressed by both the usual coterie of individual shareholders and an uncommonly large number of institutional investors who have been chafing for structural change and greater openness from the oil giant.

read more

Shell’s game

Financial Times: Shell’s game

By Clay Harris

Jun 29, 2004

Perhaps the most surprising vote at Shell’s annual meeting came on the question used to test the electronic voting system. Should Sol Campbell’s apparent headed winner in England’s match against Portugal have been allowed to stand? Some 58 per cent of the Shell shareholders voting said the Swiss referee was right to disallow it.

Score of Shell

Financial Times: Score of Shell

Jun 29, 2004

The main theatre in the Dutch seaside resort of Scheveningen had on offer the Disney musical The Lion King. But Royal Dutch/Shell shareholders who attended yesterday’s delayed annual meeting there were treated to a rather less uplifting performance, as directors of the embattled oil giant struggled to answer some of their more critical comments.

Still, as in all good shows, the script had been carefully written ahead of time. The refrain took the form of proxy votes of approval, which management had gathered beforehand.

read more

Shell apologises to angry shareholders

Financial Times: Shell apologises to angry shareholders

“When somebody is asked to leave under a shadow and yet paid a huge amount of money, it is usually to keep them quiet isn’t it?”

By Ian Bickerton, James Boxell and Sundeep Tucker

Jun 29, 2004

Nearly six months have passed since Royal Dutch/ Shell issued its first reserves bombshell and shareholders were yesterday itching to attack the company’s management at the dual annual meetings.

Both private and institutional shareholders turned up in force at the ExCel exhibition hall in east London to air their grievances – and they were legion.

Shareholders were particularly incensed by the £1m pay-out for Sir Philip Watts, the former chairman. One asked: “When somebody is asked to leave under a shadow and yet paid a huge amount of money, it is usually to keep them quiet isn’t it?”

read more

Shell chief ‘was told in advance’ of problems

Financial Times: Shell chief ‘was told in advance’ of problems

By FT reporters

Published: June 28 2004 12:25 | Last Updated: June 28 2004 13:25

The most senior non-executive director of Royal Dutch Petroleum, the larger arm of Royal Dutch/Shell, knew of an “imminent problem” with the booking of oil reserves two months before the company disclosed it publicly, it emerged on Tuesday.

The revelation, made at the annual meeting of Royal Dutch in the Netherlands by Aad Jacobs, chairman of the supervisory board, contrasted with comments made in London by Lord Oxburgh, chairman of Shell Transport & Trading.

read more

Shell chairman to view problems at Sapref, says activist

Business Report (SA): Shell chairman to view problems at Sapref, says activist

“Shareholders are tired of Shell’s lying and spinning”: “a chorus of disillusionment over its integrity and transparency”

June 29, 2004

By Samantha Enslin and Sapa – AFP

Durban – Shell chairman Ron Oxburgh had conceded that there were problems at the SA Petroleum Refinery (Sapref) in Durban and had agreed to come to see for himself, according to Desmond D’ Sa, the chairman of the South Durban Community Environmental Alliance.

D’ Sa was among environmental activists who joined Royal Dutch/Shell shareholders yesterday at the oil giant’s annual general meeting in a chorus of disillusionment over its integrity and transparency.

read more

Business Report: SEC probe quizzes 30 Shell employees

Business Report: SEC probe quizzes 30 Shell employees

June 29, 2004

The Hague – Thirty employees of Anglo-Dutch oil company Royal Dutch/Shell Group had so far been questioned by the US Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC), which was investigating improper reserves disclosure, company executives said.

They were being quizzed at the group’s annual meeting yesterday, held concurrently in The Hague and London.

Shell, the world’s third-biggest publicly traded oil company by market capitalisation, did not specify who the employees were.

read more

Testy Annual Meeting Focuses on Shell’s Scandal

The New York Times: Testy Annual Meeting Focuses on Shell’s Scandal

“A few of Shell’s top executives mislead shareholders and the financial world, he said. ”In the United States they’d have been taken away in handcuffs.”

By GREGORY CROUCH

Published: June 29, 2004

THE HAGUE, June 28 – At its first annual meeting since it became engulfed in an oil reserve scandal, the Royal Dutch/Shell Group on Monday tried to contain the fury of shareholders, but the company may have inadvertently made things worse after an executive raised doubts about when he was first informed of the reserve discrepancy.

Shareholders – demanding to know how the company could have overbooked 4.5 billion barrels of oil and gas reserves and also when company officials first knew about it – appeared surprised when Aad Jacobs, supervisory board chairman of the Royal Dutch Petroleum Company, said he was told of “an issue with reserves” in November.

read more

The Guardian: Shell investors vent fury on ‘incompetent’ board

The Guardian: Shell investors vent fury on ‘incompetent’ board

“This company is giving world class salaries to non-executives for a world class scandal.”

Terry Macalister

Tuesday June 29, 2004

Small shareholders seized the first public opportunity to vent their anger with the Shell board, accusing it of incompetence and of rewarding failure, at yesterday’s annual meeting in London.

However, there was no big rebellion by institutions even though nearly 40% of investors voted against management resolutions at a parallel annual meeting in The Hague for the Dutch arm of the dual-listed company.

Attempts to get chairman Lord Oxburgh to reveal any moves to change the complex structure of the group were unsuccessful. He would say only that “extreme structures” were being considered – but did not explain what he meant.

read more

Daily Telegraph: Shell’s board survive: No wonder Shell is in such a mess

Daily Telegraph: Shell’s board survive: No wonder Shell is in such a mess

Here’s another lord in a lather. Oxburgh of Liverpool was probably out of breath when he arrived at the House of Lords for yesterday’s science and technology select committee meeting. For the previous four hours, the non-executive chairman of Shell’s UK business had delivered a (peerless?) master class in apologising for the oil and gas giant’s shocking loss of 23pc of its proven oil and gas reserves. It was a day for apologies at Shell’s annual meeting. Lord Oxburgh’s first one was for low-flying aircraft that might drown out his words.

read more

Daily Telegraph: Shell boards survive as showdown evaporates

Daily Telegraph: Shell boards survive as showdown evaporates

By Christopher Hope, Business Correspondent (Filed: 29/06/2004)

Shell’s embattled boards came through two stormy annual meetings in Britain and the Netherlands yesterday but a promised showdown with institutional investors failed to materialise.

In London, Lord Oxburgh of Liverpool, Shell’s UK chairman, was forced to deny there had been a board level “cover-up” over Shell’s announcement that it had overstated its proven reserves of oil and gas by more than 20pc.

Meanwhile, in The Hague, 40pc of Shell’s Dutch shareholders voted against a routine resolution “discharging” its directors and supervisory board of responsibility for Shell’s 2003 accounts.

read more

Houston Chronicle: Royal Dutch-Shell fuels doubts

Houston Chronicle: Royal Dutch-Shell fuels doubts

June 29, 2004,

THE HAGUE, NETHERLANDS – For the first time since it became engulfed in an oil reserve scandal, the Royal Dutch-Shell Group of Companies on Monday tried to contain the fury of shareholders at its annual meeting, but the company may have made things worse after an executive raised doubts about when he was first informed of the reserve discrepancy.

Shareholders demanding to know how the company could have overbooked about 4.5 billion barrels of oil and gas reserves and also when company officials first knew about it appeared surprised when Aad Jacobs, supervisory board chairman of the Royal Dutch Petroleum Co., said he was told of “an issue with reserves” last November. Shell’s overstatement of its reserve estimates did not become public knowledge until early January.

read more

Business Report: take one share to Shell AGM

Business Report: take one share to Shell AGM

By Edward West

June 28, 2004

Cape Town – One share in Royal Dutch/Shell bought for £0.25 (R2.80) has enabled two environmental activists from South Africa, Desmond D’Sa and Ardiel Soeker, to attend the oil multinational’s annual meeting (AGM) in London today, where they will join a delegation spotlighting the group’s environmental record.

D’Sa is from an organisation called groundWork, while Soeker is from the South Durban Community Environmental Alliance. The two bodies had joined a network of environmental groups, headed by Friends of the Earth, to draw attention to the environmental plight of communities adjacent to Shell’s operations around the world, said spokesperson Ferrial Adam.

read more

Oil & Gas Journal: Pension funds sue Shell brass, auditors, seeking damages, policy changes

Oil & Gas Journal: Pension funds sue Shell brass, auditors, seeking damages, policy changes

Judy Clark

Associate Editor

28 June 2004

HOUSTON, June 28 — In a move that could indirectly impact a number of companies, two US-based pension funds filed suit Friday against 27 directors and officers of the Royal Dutch/Shell Group and their accounting and audit firms PricewaterhouseCoopers International and KPMG International.

The action followed financial losses and scandal associated with Shell’s cutting its proved oil and natural gas reserves four times since Jan. 9 for a total downgrade of 4.47 billion boe for 2002 reserves—23% of its proved reserves as stated Dec. 31, 2002—and 500 million boe for 2003. The reserves debacle exposed an underlying industry-wide problem in reserves booking that many companies must now address (OJG, Apr. 5, 2004, p. 43).

read more

The New York Times: Shell Asks Shareholders for Forgiveness

The New York Times: Shell Asks Shareholders for Forgiveness

By THE ASSOCIATED PRESS

Published: June 28, 2004

LONDON (AP) — The leaders of the Royal Dutch/Shell Group of Cos., chastened by this year’s reserves booking fiasco, asked shareholders for forgiveness on Monday and time to revamp the Anglo-Dutch oil giant.

At two annual general meetings in England and the Netherlands, board members of the parent companies — Royal Dutch Petroleum Co. and Shell Transport & Trading Co. — were pressed by shareholders and institutional investors who have been calling for structural changes and greater openness.

read more

The New York Times: Shell Survives Shareholder Rebellion

The New York Times: Shell Survives Shareholder Rebellion

“Not only has Shell been overstating its oil reserves, it has exaggerated its social and environmental performance too”

By REUTERS

Published: June 28, 2004

THE HAGUE/LONDON (Reuters) – Embattled oil giant Royal Dutch/Shell survived a shareholder rebellion on Monday, but not before almost 40 percent of its Dutch stock was voted against key resolutions at the annual general meeting.

Investors gathered in The Hague were asked to agree that Royal Dutch managing directors and its supervisory board “be discharged of responsibility in respect of their management for the year 2003.” Usually such a vote would be carried almost unanimously, but Monday’s vote saw only 60 percent in favor. Shareholders at a twin meeting in London also showed their disapproval of the disastrous year of reserves downgrades and high-level executive firings. Almost 10 percent of Shell stock was voted against approving executive pay for the year.

read more

PRESS RELEASE FROM FRIENDS OF THE EARTH 28 JUNE 2004

PRESS RELEASE FROM FRIENDS OF THE EARTH 28 JUNE 2004

Shell Directors Promise to Visit Fenceline Communities

Jun 28 2004

Shell directors, under fire for polluting communities and damaging people’s health, promised to visit some of the affected areas when challenged by community representatives at the AGM in London today (Monday). People from Texas, Louisiana, South Africa and Nigeria travelled to the meeting with campaigners from Friends of the Earth to raise their concerns, publishing an alternative version of Shell’s report for shareholders [1].

read more

Shell repeats commitment to end Nigeria gas flaring by 2008

MLive.com: Shell repeats commitment to end Nigeria gas flaring by 2008

The Associated Press

28/06/04

LONDON (Dow Jones/AP) — Royal Dutch/Shell Group Monday reiterated a commitment to end the process of flaring off natural gas from oil projects in Nigeria by 2008.

The company said it has spent about $2 billion to date on infrastructure to collect and ship the gas which would otherwise be burned off into the atmosphere.

Shell has been under pressure from environmentalists and local residents to end gas flaring in Nigeria. Some say the process contributes to global warming.

read more

The Guardian: Shareholders vent anger over Shell scandal

The Guardian: Shareholders vent anger over Shell scandal

Mark Tran

Monday June 28, 2004

Shell, the embattled Anglo-Dutch oil giant, today suffered further humiliation when 40% of Dutch investors voted against a routine resolution.

The vote, which is essentially an expression of confidence in the management, is usually a formality for Dutch firms, making a disapproval rate of 40% the latest blow to hit the group.

Following the debacle over Shell’s overstatement of oil and gas reserves, shareholders at the Royal Dutch arm of the company rejected the resolution. It had asked shareholders to agree that the managing directors and the supervisory board of the firm “be discharged of responsibility in respect of their management for the year 2003”.

read more

The Times: Shell investors reject key proposal

The Times: Shell investors reject key proposal

From AFP in London and The Hague

June 28, 2004

Royal Dutch Shell survived a shareholder rebellion on Monday, but not before investors representing almost 40 per cent of its Dutch stock voted against a key resolution in The Hague, rejecting the annual proposition that accepts that the board had discharged its duties adequately.

Shareholders at the London half of the company’s twin-centred annual meeting also showed their disapproval of the company’s disastrous year of reserves downgrades and management sackings, with a 10 per cent vote against the group’s executive remuneration package.

read more

SKY NEWS: INVESTORS ARE DISGUSTED

SKY NEWS: INVESTORS ARE DISGUSTED

28 June 04

Shell shareholders have shown their disapproval at the company’s disastrous year of reserves downgrades and management sackings.

At the firm’s annual meeting in London, 10% voted against the group’s executive remuneration package.

Shell made four reserves downgrades since January, and the crisis sparked the departure of three top directors – including chairman Sir Philip Watts.

The firm made a £1m severance payment to Sir Philip, who was ousted after the board said it had lost confidence in him.

read more

Anger over Shell Reserves Crisis

The Scotsman: Anger over Shell Reserves Crisis

By David Winning, City Staff, PA News

28 June 04

Oil giant Shell was today given a torrid time by shareholders angry at the crisis over its reserves.

At its annual meeting in London, Shell was forced to defend its record in the face of allegations of a cover up and a lack of transparency.

Shell has downgraded its oil and gas stocks four times since January in a crisis that sparked the departure of three top directors, including chairman Sir Philip Watts.

The task facing the company as it battles to restore confidence was underlined by 10% of investors voting against its remuneration package for directors.

read more

Reuters.co.uk: Shell survives shareholder rebellion

Reuters.co.uk: Shell survives shareholder rebellion

Mon 28 June, 2004 14:32

THE HAGUE/LONDON (Reuters) – Royal Dutch/Shell has survived a shareholder rebellion, but not before investors representing almost 40 percent of its Dutch stock voted against a key resolution in The Hague.

The rebellion was over a resolution asking shareholders to agree that the managing directors and the supervisory board of the firm “be discharged of responsibility in respect of their management for the year 2003.”

Shareholders at a twin Annual General Meeting (AGM) in London on Monday also showed their disapproval of the company’s disastrous year of reserves downgrades and management sackings, with a 10 percent vote against the group’s executive remuneration package.

read more

BBC News: Shell appeals to shareholders’ patience

BBC News: Shell appeals to shareholders’ patience “You are still covering up the scandal,” the heckler cried to some applause,”

By Jorn Madslien

BBC News Online business reporter at the Shell AGM in London

28 June 04

Heads have long since rolled over Shell’s exaggerated reserves scandal and a new management team is in place, yet its shareholders are still far from content.

Having turned up in droves at the group’s much delayed annual general meeting in London on Monday, they demanded answers and they wanted further change.

“I am quite sure you were in consultation with institutional shareholders, so why were private shareholders left out?” barked private investor John Kennedy who wanted to know why Shell had failed to write to small investors at the height of the scandal back in the winter.

read more

BBC NEWS: Troubled Shell faces shareholders

BBC NEWS: Troubled Shell faces shareholders

28 June 04

Shell is struggling to regain shareholder confidence

Oil giant Shell is facing shareholders in London and the Hague for the first time since it cut reserves in January.

Monday’s annual meeting was delayed for two months by the crisis which cost three top officials their jobs.

Shell’s complex structure is likely to be a topic, with big investors wanting to see corporate governance improve.

Shareholders in the Hague are expected to try to block a resolution which could clear managers of responsibility for this year’s multiple downgrades.

read more

Thirty Royal Dutch/Shell employees questioned by SEC in reserves probe

San Francisco Chronicle: Thirty Royal Dutch/Shell employees questioned by SEC in reserves probe

Monday, June 28, 2004

THE HAGUE, Netherlands (Dow Jones/AP) — Royal Dutch/Shell Group executives said Monday that 30 employees have so far been questioned by the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission, which is investigating the Anglo-Dutch oil giant for improper reserves disclosure.

The executives were being quizzed at the group’s annual general meeting, which is taking place concurrently in The Hague and London.

Shell, the world’s third-largest publicly traded oil company by market capitalization, didn’t specify who those employees are.

read more

North County Times: Shell accused of shorting gas supply

North County Times: Shell accused of shorting gas supply

By: EDMOND JACOBY – Staff Writer

Posted 28 June 04

As North County’s —- indeed, California’s —- motoring public adapts to unrelenting high retail gasoline prices that some pundits say will move past the $2.50-per-gallon mark before summer’s end, one refiner has come under fire for allegedly setting refinery maintenance schedules that limit gasoline output during periods of peak demand.

The Foundation for Taxpayer & Consumer Rights of Santa Monica on Monday charged that Shell Oil Co. set maintenance schedules for California refineries during the last few weeks before the Labor Day weekend, when gasoline consumption surges.

read more

The West Australian: Anger at Shell’s slow review pace

The West Australian: Anger at Shell’s slow review pace

JOHN PHACEAS

28 June 2004

Today looms as D-Day for troubled oil giant Royal Dutch-Shell, with shareholders expected to vent their spleen over the reserves write-down fiasco when they gather for this year’s annual meetings in London and The Hague.

Shell has been under intense pressure since admitting in February that it had over-estimated its oil reserves by 25 per cent, or 4.4 billion barrels. The move wiped billions off the market value of the Anglo-Dutch group, and forced three senior executives, including chairman Sir Philip Watts, to resign.

read more

What severance does the chief deserve when his board calls for a change of leadership due to a loss of confidence?

Christian Science Monitor: What severance does the chief deserve when his board calls for a change of leadership due to a loss of confidence?

read more

Daily Telegraph: Shell can be sure of strife

Daily Telegraph: Shell can be sure of strife

By Nina Montagu-Smith (Filed: 28/06/2004)

Oil giant Shell is preparing for a rough ride from shareholders at today’s annual meeting, at which institutional investor Isis plans to ask for greater clarification about its plans to improve corporate governance.

Although concern over such issues has been to the fore since Shell’s announcement in March that it had overstated its proven oil reserves by 20pc, shareholders are also upset about environmental issues and a £1m payoff for chairman Sir Philip Watts, who resigned in March.

read more

Lively meetings

Financial Times: Lively meetings

By John Plender

Published: June 28 2004 5:00 | Last Updated: June 28 2004 5:00

People have long worried about the unsatisfactory nature of annual meetings and debated what to do about it. Yet today’s Royal Dutch/Shell meetings will probably demonstrate that there is still some life in this much maligned principal-agent get-together.

Even big institutions are proposing to turn up to vent their anger at Shell’s perceived arrogance and sorry governance. It suggests that the AGM is best seen as a default mechanism. When dialogue between institutional shareholders and management has broken down, the meeting can revert to its true function of providing a forum for shareholders to hold management to account.

read more

%d bloggers like this: