Amplifon Proposes Shareholder Voting Rights Enhancement in Response to New Italian Law

March 23, 2024

ROME, ITALY – Amplifon, the world’s leading hearing aid retailer, has announced its intention to strengthen voting rights, aligning with a recently passed capital markets bill in Italy. The company is among the first Italian-listed companies to take such a step in response to the change in law.

The proposal comes in response to Law no. 21 of March 5th, 2024, commonly known as the “DDL Capitali,” which aims to bolster the competitiveness of businesses and the capital market.

Amplifon’s Board of Directors, chaired by Susan Carol Holland, has proposed several amendments to the company’s Articles of Association to accommodate the new legal provisions.

Strengthening Voting Rights of Shareholders

Among the proposed changes is the enhancement of the increased voting rights mechanism, building upon the existing structure. This initiative seeks to create a capital structure conducive to Amplifon’s sustained growth in a fiercely competitive global market driven by technology and innovation.

By empowering long-term shareholders, Amplifon aims to facilitate potential growth avenues, including external initiatives like acquisitions or strategic alliances.

The amendments, to be presented at an Extraordinary Shareholders’ Meeting on April 30th, 2024, encompass various aspects of the company’s governance. These include allowing shareholders’ meetings to be held exclusively through a proxy agent appointed by the company and granting the Board of Directors the authority to increase the share capital by up to approximately 20%. Additionally, other adjustments to the Articles of Association are proposed to enhance operational efficiency and flexibility.

Prime Minister Giorgia Meloni’s government introduced the capital markets bill with the aim of revitalizing the Italian stock exchange (Borsa Italiana) and curbing relocations to other jurisdictions. The legislation includes provisions allowing listed companies to issue shares with increased voting rights, a move intended to attract new investors and deter relocations. While controversial, the measure reflects efforts to bolster Italy’s standing in the global capital markets arena.

Amplifon’s decision to leverage the new legal framework underscores its proactive approach to governance and growth strategy. By aligning with regulatory changes and prioritizing long-term shareholder interests, Amplifon aims to reinforce its position as a leader in the hearing solutions industry while continuing to operate from its base in Italy.


Source: Reuters, Amplifon

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