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Posts from ‘June, 2004’

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

royaldutchshellplc.com and its sister websites royaldutchshellgroup.com, shellenergy.website, shellnazihistory.com, royaldutchshell.website, johndonovan.website, shellnews.net and shell2004.com are all owned by John Donovan. There is also a Wikipedia article.

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

royaldutchshellplc.com and its sister websites royaldutchshellgroup.com, shellenergy.website, shellnazihistory.com, royaldutchshell.website, johndonovan.website, shellnews.net and shell2004.com are all owned by John Donovan. There is also a Wikipedia article.

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

royaldutchshellplc.com and its sister websites royaldutchshellgroup.com, shellenergy.website, shellnazihistory.com, royaldutchshell.website, johndonovan.website, shellnews.net and shell2004.com are all owned by John Donovan. There is also a Wikipedia article.

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

royaldutchshellplc.com and its sister websites royaldutchshellgroup.com, shellenergy.website, shellnazihistory.com, royaldutchshell.website, johndonovan.website, shellnews.net and shell2004.com are all owned by John Donovan. There is also a Wikipedia article.

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.

royaldutchshellplc.com and its sister websites royaldutchshellgroup.com, shellenergy.website, shellnazihistory.com, royaldutchshell.website, johndonovan.website, shellnews.net and shell2004.com are all owned by John Donovan. There is also a Wikipedia article.

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

royaldutchshellplc.com and its sister websites royaldutchshellgroup.com, shellenergy.website, shellnazihistory.com, royaldutchshell.website, johndonovan.website, shellnews.net and shell2004.com are all owned by John Donovan. There is also a Wikipedia article.

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

royaldutchshellplc.com and its sister websites royaldutchshellgroup.com, shellenergy.website, shellnazihistory.com, royaldutchshell.website, johndonovan.website, shellnews.net and shell2004.com are all owned by John Donovan. There is also a Wikipedia article.

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

royaldutchshellplc.com and its sister websites royaldutchshellgroup.com, shellenergy.website, shellnazihistory.com, royaldutchshell.website, johndonovan.website, shellnews.net and shell2004.com are all owned by John Donovan. There is also a Wikipedia article.

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

royaldutchshellplc.com and its sister websites royaldutchshellgroup.com, shellenergy.website, shellnazihistory.com, royaldutchshell.website, johndonovan.website, shellnews.net and shell2004.com are all owned by John Donovan. There is also a Wikipedia article.

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

royaldutchshellplc.com and its sister websites royaldutchshellgroup.com, shellenergy.website, shellnazihistory.com, royaldutchshell.website, johndonovan.website, shellnews.net and shell2004.com are all owned by John Donovan. There is also a Wikipedia article.

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

royaldutchshellplc.com and its sister websites royaldutchshellgroup.com, shellenergy.website, shellnazihistory.com, royaldutchshell.website, johndonovan.website, shellnews.net and shell2004.com are all owned by John Donovan. There is also a Wikipedia article.

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

royaldutchshellplc.com and its sister websites royaldutchshellgroup.com, shellenergy.website, shellnazihistory.com, royaldutchshell.website, johndonovan.website, shellnews.net and shell2004.com are all owned by John Donovan. There is also a Wikipedia article.

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

royaldutchshellplc.com and its sister websites royaldutchshellgroup.com, shellenergy.website, shellnazihistory.com, royaldutchshell.website, johndonovan.website, shellnews.net and shell2004.com are all owned by John Donovan. There is also a Wikipedia article.

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

royaldutchshellplc.com and its sister websites royaldutchshellgroup.com, shellenergy.website, shellnazihistory.com, royaldutchshell.website, johndonovan.website, shellnews.net and shell2004.com are all owned by John Donovan. There is also a Wikipedia article.

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

royaldutchshellplc.com and its sister websites royaldutchshellgroup.com, shellenergy.website, shellnazihistory.com, royaldutchshell.website, johndonovan.website, shellnews.net and shell2004.com are all owned by John Donovan. There is also a Wikipedia article.

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

royaldutchshellplc.com and its sister websites royaldutchshellgroup.com, shellenergy.website, shellnazihistory.com, royaldutchshell.website, johndonovan.website, shellnews.net and shell2004.com are all owned by John Donovan. There is also a Wikipedia article.
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