Association of Critical Shareholders in Germany

"'Critical Shareholders' are not the ones who first ask how high their dividends are, but where they come from. They loudly demand more environmental protection, more social justice, and the maintenance of human rights in the annual general meetings of shareholders in more than 30 German corporations.

The Critical Shareholders asked that environmental protection and product liability be included among the main company goals in the corporate charter at Bayer, Merck, RWE, and Deutsche Bank for the first time in 1996 - and received considerable success with between three and five per cent of the votes cast. More and more small shareholders are joining the Critical Shareholders and are giving them their proxy rights.

'We respect anyone who wishes to keep his or her Daimler or Siemens stocks as an investment,' assures the director of the Association of Critical Shareholders, Henry Mathews. 'But if you don't think that part of your dividend should be earned with weapons or nuclear technology, then you can let the company managers know through us.'

Shareholders who wish to be represented by the Association and its 35 member organizations only have to provide a power of attorney once a year. It covers the voting rights in all companies in whose annual general meetings the Critical Shareholders are active."

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Last update of this page May 8, 1998