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Companies Act 2006

Changes over time for: Cross Heading: “Sell-out”

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“Sell-out” E+W+S+N.I.

983Right of minority shareholder to be bought out by offerorE+W+S+N.I.

(1)Subsections (2) and (3) apply in a case where a takeover offer relates to all the shares in a company.

For this purpose a takeover offer relates to all the shares in a company if it is an offer to acquire all the shares in the company within the meaning of section 974.

(2)The holder of any voting shares to which the offer relates who has not accepted the offer may require the offeror to acquire those shares if, at any time before the end of the period within which the offer can be accepted—

(a)the offeror has by virtue of acceptances of the offer acquired or unconditionally contracted to acquire some (but not all) of the shares to which the offer relates, and

(b)those shares, with or without any other shares in the company which he has acquired or contracted to acquire (whether unconditionally or subject to conditions being met)—

(i)amount to not less than 90% in value of all the voting shares in the company (or would do so but for section 990(1)), and

(ii)carry not less than 90% of the voting rights in the company (or would do so but for section 990(1)).

(3)The holder of any non-voting shares to which the offer relates who has not accepted the offer may require the offeror to acquire those shares if, at any time before the end of the period within which the offer can be accepted—

(a)the offeror has by virtue of acceptances of the offer acquired or unconditionally contracted to acquire some (but not all) of the shares to which the offer relates, and

(b)those shares, with or without any other shares in the company which he has acquired or contracted to acquire (whether unconditionally or subject to conditions being met), amount to not less than 90% in value of all the shares in the company (or would do so but for section 990(1)).

(4)If a takeover offer relates to shares of one or more classes and at any time before the end of the period within which the offer can be accepted—

(a)the offeror has by virtue of acceptances of the offer acquired or unconditionally contracted to acquire some (but not all) of the shares of any class to which the offer relates, and

(b)those shares, with or without any other shares of that class which he has acquired or contracted to acquire (whether unconditionally or subject to conditions being met)—

(i)amount to not less than 90% in value of all the shares of that class, and

(ii)in a case where the shares of that class are voting shares, carry not less than 90% of the voting rights carried by the shares of that class,

the holder of any shares of that class to which the offer relates who has not accepted the offer may require the offeror to acquire those shares.

(5)For the purposes of subsections (2) to (4), in calculating 90% of the value of any shares, shares held by the company as treasury shares are to be treated as having been acquired by the offeror.

(6)Subsection (7) applies where—

(a)a shareholder exercises rights conferred on him by subsection (2), (3) or (4),

(b)at the time when he does so, there are shares in the company which the offeror has contracted to acquire subject to conditions being met, and in relation to which the contract has not become unconditional, and

(c)the requirement imposed by subsection (2)(b), (3)(b) or (4)(b) (as the case may be) would not be satisfied if those shares were not taken into account.

(7)The shareholder is treated for the purposes of section 985 as not having exercised his rights under this section unless the requirement imposed by paragraph (b) of subsection (2), (3) or (4) (as the case may be) would be satisfied if—

(a)the reference in that paragraph to other shares in the company which the offeror has contracted to acquire unconditionally or subject to conditions being met were a reference to such shares which he has unconditionally contracted to acquire, and

(b)the reference in that subsection to the period within which the offer can be accepted were a reference to the period referred to in section 984(2).

(8)A reference in subsection (2)(b), (3)(b), (4)(b), (6) or (7) to shares which the offeror has acquired or contracted to acquire includes a reference to shares which an associate of his has acquired or contracted to acquire.

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Modifications etc. (not altering text)

C1Ss. 974-991 applied (with modifications) (1.10.2009) by The Unregistered Companies Regulations 2009 (S.I. 2009/2436), regs. 3-5, Sch. 1 para. 14(2) (with transitional provisions and savings in regs. 7, 9, Sch. 2)

984Further provision about rights conferred by section 983E+W+S+N.I.

(1)Rights conferred on a shareholder by subsection (2), (3) or (4) of section 983 are exercisable by a written communication addressed to the offeror.

(2)Rights conferred on a shareholder by subsection (2), (3) or (4) of that section are not exercisable after the end of the period of three months from—

(a)the end of the period within which the offer can be accepted, or

(b)if later, the date of the notice that must be given under subsection (3) below.

(3)Within one month of the time specified in subsection (2), (3) or (4) (as the case may be) of that section, the offeror must give any shareholder who has not accepted the offer notice in the prescribed manner of—

(a)the rights that are exercisable by the shareholder under that subsection, and

(b)the period within which the rights are exercisable.

If the notice is given before the end of the period within which the offer can be accepted, it must state that the offer is still open for acceptance.

(4)Subsection (3) does not apply if the offeror has given the shareholder a notice in respect of the shares in question under section 979.

(5)An offeror who fails to comply with subsection (3) commits an offence.

If the offeror is a company, every officer of that company who is in default or to whose neglect the failure is attributable also commits an offence.

(6)If an offeror other than a company is charged with an offence for failing to comply with subsection (3), it is a defence for him to prove that he took all reasonable steps for securing compliance with that subsection.

(7)A person guilty of an offence under this section is liable—

(a)on conviction on indictment, to a fine;

(b)on summary conviction, to a fine not exceeding the statutory maximum and, for continued contravention, a daily default fine not exceeding one-fiftieth of the statutory maximum.

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Annotations are used to give authority for changes and other effects on the legislation you are viewing and to convey editorial information. They appear at the foot of the relevant provision or under the associated heading. Annotations are categorised by annotation type, such as F-notes for textual amendments and I-notes for commencement information (a full list can be found in the Editorial Practice Guide). Each annotation is identified by a sequential reference number. For F-notes, M-notes and X-notes, the number also appears in bold superscript at the relevant location in the text. All annotations contain links to the affecting legislation.

Modifications etc. (not altering text)

C2Ss. 974-991 applied (with modifications) (1.10.2009) by The Unregistered Companies Regulations 2009 (S.I. 2009/2436), regs. 3-5, Sch. 1 para. 14(2) (with transitional provisions and savings in regs. 7, 9, Sch. 2)

Commencement Information

I1S. 984 wholly in force at 6.4.2007; s. 1043 not in force at Royal Assent, see s. 1300; s. 984 in force for specified purposes at 20.1.2007 by S.I. 2006/3428, art. 3(3) (subject to art. 5, Sch. 1 and with arts. 6, 8, Sch. 5)); s. 984 wholly in force at 6.4.2007 by S.I. 2007/1093 {art. 2(1)(b)}

985Effect of requirement under section 983E+W+S+N.I.

(1)Subject to section 986, this section applies where a shareholder exercises his rights under section 983 in respect of any shares held by him.

(2)The offeror is entitled and bound to acquire those shares on the terms of the offer or on such other terms as may be agreed.

(3)Where the terms of an offer are such as to give the shareholder a choice of consideration—

(a)the shareholder may indicate his choice when requiring the offeror to acquire the shares, and

(b)the notice given to the shareholder under section 984(3)—

(i)must give particulars of the choice and of the rights conferred by this subsection, and

(ii)may state which consideration specified in the offer will apply if he does not indicate a choice.

The reference in subsection (2) to the terms of the offer is to be read accordingly.

(4)Subsection (3) applies whether or not any time-limit or other conditions applicable to the choice under the terms of the offer can still be complied with.

(5)If the consideration offered to or (as the case may be) chosen by the shareholder—

(a)is not cash and the offeror is no longer able to provide it, or

(b)was to have been provided by a third party who is no longer bound or able to provide it,

the consideration is to be taken to consist of an amount of cash, payable by the offeror, which at the date when the shareholder requires the offeror to acquire the shares is equivalent to the consideration offered or (as the case may be) chosen.

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Annotations are used to give authority for changes and other effects on the legislation you are viewing and to convey editorial information. They appear at the foot of the relevant provision or under the associated heading. Annotations are categorised by annotation type, such as F-notes for textual amendments and I-notes for commencement information (a full list can be found in the Editorial Practice Guide). Each annotation is identified by a sequential reference number. For F-notes, M-notes and X-notes, the number also appears in bold superscript at the relevant location in the text. All annotations contain links to the affecting legislation.

Modifications etc. (not altering text)

C3Ss. 974-991 applied (with modifications) (1.10.2009) by The Unregistered Companies Regulations 2009 (S.I. 2009/2436), regs. 3-5, Sch. 1 para. 14(2) (with transitional provisions and savings in regs. 7, 9, Sch. 2)

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