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PART VIN.I.SHARE CAPITAL, ITS INCREASE, MAINTENANCE AND REDUCTION

CHAPTER VIN.I.FINANCIAL ASSISTANCE BY A COMPANY FOR ACQUISITION OF ITS OWN SHARES

Private companiesN.I.

Relaxation of Article 161 for private companiesN.I.

165.[F1(1) Article 161 does not prohibit a private company from giving financial assistance in a case where the acquisition of shares in question is or was an acquisition of shares in the company or, if it is a subsidiary of another private company, in that other company if the following provisions of this Article, and Articles 166 to 168, are complied with as respects the giving of that assistance.

(2) The financial assistance may only be given if the company has net assets which are not thereby reduced or, to the extent that they are reduced, if the assistance is provided out of distributable profits.

Article 164(2) applies for the interpretation of this paragraph.

(3) This Article does not permit financial assistance to be given by a subsidiary in a case where the acquisition of shares in question is or was an acquisition of shares in its holding company, if it is also a subsidiary of a public company which is itself a subsidiary of that holding company.

(4) Unless the company proposing to give the financial assistance is a wholly-owned subsidiary, the giving of assistance under this Article must be approved by special resolution of the company in general meeting.

(5) Where the financial assistance is to be given by the company in a case where the acquisition of shares in question is or was an acquisition of shares in its holding company, that holding company and any other company which is both the company's holding company and a subsidiary of that other holding company (except, in any case, a company which is a wholly-owned subsidiary) shall also approve by special resolution in general meeting the giving of the financial assistance.

(6) The directors of the company proposing to give the financial assistance and, where the shares acquired or to be acquired are shares in its holding company, the directors of that company and of any other company which is both the company's holding company and a subsidiary of that other holding company shall before the financial assistance is given make a statutory declaration in the prescribed form complying with Article 166.]

Annotations:

F1Art. 165 repealed (1.10.2008 with application as mentioned in art. 5(2) of the commencing S.I.) by Companies Act 2006 (c. 46), ss. 1284(2), 1295, 1300(2), Sch. 16; S.I. 2007/3495, arts. 5(2), 8(b), Sch. 3 Pt. 2 (with arts. 7, 12, Sch. 4 paras. 51, 52)

Statutory declaration under Article 165N.I.

166.[F2(1) A statutory declaration made by a company's directors under Article 165(6) shall contain such particulars of the financial assistance to be given, and of the business of the company of which they are directors, as may be prescribed, and shall identify the person to whom the assistance is to be given.

(2) The declaration shall state that the directors have formed the opinion, as regards the company's initial situation immediately following the date on which the assistance is proposed to be given, that there will be no ground on which it could then be found to be unable to pay its debts; and either—

(a)if it is intended to commence the winding up of the company within 12 months of that date, the company will be able to pay its debts in full within 12 months of the commencement of the winding up, or

(b)in any other case, that the company will be able to pay its debts as they fall due during the year immediately following that date.

(3) In forming their opinion for the purposes of paragraph (2), the directors shall take into account the same liabilities (including contingent and prospective liabilities) as would be relevant under[F3 Article 102 of the Insolvency Order] (winding up by the court) to the question whether the company is unable to pay its debts.

(4) The directors' statutory declaration shall have annexed to it a report addressed to them by their company's auditors stating that—

(a)they have enquired into the state of affairs of the company, and

(b)they are not aware of anything to indicate that the opinion expressed by the directors in the declaration as to any of the matters mentioned in paragraph (2) is unreasonable in all the circumstances.

(5) The statutory declaration and auditors' report shall be delivered to the registrar—

(a)together with a copy of any special resolution passed by the company under Article 165 and delivered to the registrar in compliance with [F4section 30 of the Companies Act 2006], or

(b)where no such resolution is required to be passed, within 15 days after the making of the declaration.

(6) If a company fails to comply with paragraph (5), the company and every officer of it who is in default is liable to a fine and, for continued contravention, to a daily default fine.

(7) A director of a company who makes a statutory declaration under Article 165 without having reasonable grounds for the opinion expressed in it is liable to imprisonment or a fine, or both.]

Special resolution under Article 165N.I.

167.[F5(1) A special resolution required by Article 165 to be passed by a company approving the giving of financial assistance must be passed on the date on which the directors of that company make the statutory declaration required by that Article in connection with the giving of that assistance, or within the week immediately following that date.

(2) Where such a resolution has been passed, an application may be made to the court for the cancellation of the resolution—

(a)by the holders of not less in the aggregate than 10 per cent. in nominal value of the company's issued share capital or any class of it, or

(b)if the company is not limited by shares, by not less than 10 per cent. of the company's members;

but the application shall not be made by a person who has consented to or voted in favour of the resolution.

(3) Article 64(3) to (10) (litigation to cancel resolution under Article 63) applies to applications under this Article as to applications under Article 64.

(4) A special resolution passed by a company is not effective for the purposes of Article 165—

(a)unless the declaration made under paragraph (6) of that Article by the directors of the company, together with the auditors' report annexed to it, is available for inspection by members of the company at the meeting at which the resolution is passed,

(b)if it is cancelled by the court on an application under this Article.]

Annotations:

F5Art. 167 repealed (1.10.2008 with application as mentioned in art. 5(2) of the commencing S.I.) by Companies Act 2006 (c. 46), ss. 1284(2), 1295, 1300(2), Sch. 16; S.I. 2007/3495, arts. 5(2), 8(b), Sch. 3 Pt. 2 (with arts. 7, 12, Sch. 4 paras. 51, 52)

Time for giving financial assistance under Article 165N.I.

168.[F6(1) This Article applies as to the time before and after which financial assistance may not be given by a company in pursuance of Article 165.

(2) Where a special resolution is required by that Article to be passed approving the giving of the assistance, the assistance shall not be given before the expiry of the period of 4 weeks beginning with—

(a)the date on which the special resolution is passed, or

(b)where more than one such resolution is passed, the date on which the last of them is passed,

unless, as respects that resolution (or, if more than one, each of them) every member of the company which passed the resolution who is entitled to vote at general meetings of the company voted in favour of the resolution.

(3) If application for the cancellation of any such resolution is made under Article 167, the financial assistance shall not be given before the final determination of the application unless the court otherwise orders.

(4) The assistance shall not be given after the expiry of the period of 8 weeks beginning with—

(a)the date on which the directors of the company proposing to give the assistance made their statutory declaration under Article 165, or

(b)where that company is a subsidiary and both its directors and the directors of any of its holding companies made such a declaration, the date on which the earliest of the declarations is made,

unless the court, on an application under Article 167, otherwise orders.]

Annotations:

F6Art. 168 repealed (1.10.2008 with application as mentioned in art. 5(2) of the commencing S.I.) by Companies Act 2006 (c. 46), ss. 1284(2), 1295, 1300(2), Sch. 16; S.I. 2007/3495, arts. 5(2), 8(b), Sch. 3 Pt. 2 (with arts. 7, 12, Sch. 4 paras. 51, 52)