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Shell Group Parent Cos. to Trade As 1 Stock

Los Angeles Times: Shell Group Parent Cos. to Trade As 1 Stock

19 May 2005

By Associated Press

THE HAGUE, Netherlands — The two parent companies of multinational oil giant Royal Dutch/Shell Group said Thursday they will trade as a single stock, Royal Dutch Shell PLC, from July 20.

The Hague-based Royal Dutch Petroleum Co. and London-based Shell Transport & Trading Co. PLC will have been listed independently for nearly a century.

Unification plans were revealed on Oct. 28 that will create a management board with a U.S.-style chief executive and a non-executive chairman. Royal Dutch and Shell Transport and Trading will propose to their shareholders, who respectively own 60 percent and 40 percent, to become subsidiaries of the new parent company.

The merger plans came in the wake of the company’s damaging downgrading of its oil reserves in early 2004. Royal Dutch/Shell has said the move is the best way to eliminate accounting failures that led it to admit in January that it had overestimated reserves by around 20 percent.

Since then it has reduced the total of its reserves by 23 percent, or 4.47 billion barrels, and has said since that it may be forced to further cut estimates.

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