Sahara and Sipchem to discuss potential merger

Updated 31 July 2013

Sahara and Sipchem to discuss potential merger

Sahara Petrochemical has entered into a non-binding agreement with Sipchem for potential merger, according to Tadawul website. “The time schedule for merger feasibility study is five months,” says Sahara.
This follows the announcement made by Sahara on June 4, 2013, regarding the initial understanding reached with Sipchem to jointly consider the economic and technical feasibility of both companies undertaking the potential merger.
Sahara announced on Tuesday that it entered into a non-binding framework agreement with Sipchem that sets out the process by which the two companies intend to progress the discussions and negotiations in relation to the merger as per the deal.
While the term of the framework agreement expires on Jan. 31, 2014, the expected timetable for assessing the feasibility of the merger currently remains approximately five months from the date of the first announcement.
Pursuant to the framework agreement, each company has agreed, among other things, to establish its own steering committee to oversee the evaluation of the merger. Such a committee comprises members of the board of directors and senior management of the relevant company who are not conflicted or related parties as per the capital market law and its implementing regulations.
The framework agreement also provides that the two companies will work together to identify any parties, which may have a conflict of interest or are related parties for the purposes of the merger and, as a result, be restricted or prohibited from exercising some or all of their respective voting or other rights in relation to the merger in accordance with applicable laws and regulations.
The entry into the framework agreement does not mean that the merger will be agreed between the two companies. If the merger is agreed, it is currently expected that it will be subject to various conditions including, without limitation, approval at the general assembly of each company and approval of the Saudi regulatory authorities. Further announcements are to be made in due course.


New emissions blow for VW as German court backs damages claims

Updated 26 May 2020

New emissions blow for VW as German court backs damages claims

  • Scandal has already cost firm more than €30 billion; ruling serves as template for about 60,000 cases

KARLSRUHE, Germany: Volkswagen must pay compensation to owners of vehicles with rigged diesel engines in Germany, a court ruled on Monday, dealing a fresh blow to the automaker almost 5 years after its emissions scandal erupted.

The ruling by Germany’s highest court for civil disputes, which will allow owners to return vehicles for a partial refund of the purchase price, serves as a template for about 60,000 lawsuits that are still pending with lower German courts.

Volkswagen admitted in September 2015 to cheating in emissions tests on diesel engines, a scandal which has already cost it more than €30 billion ($33 billion) in regulatory fines and vehicle refits, mostly in the US.

US authorities banned the affected cars after the cheat software was discovered, triggering claims for compensation.

But in Europe vehicles remained on the roads, leading Volkswagen to argue compensation claims there were without merit. European authorities instead forced the company to update its engine control software and fined it for fraud and administrative lapses.

Volkswagen said on Monday it would work urgently with motorists on an agreement that would see them hold on to the vehicles for a one-off compensation payment.

It did not give an estimate of how much the ruling by the German federal court, the Bundesgerichtshof (BGH), might cost it.

Volkswagen shares were 0.5 percent lower. The BGH’s presiding judge had signaled earlier this month he saw grounds for compensation.

Costs mount

“The verdict by the BGH draws a final line. It creates clarity on the BGH’s views on the underlying questions in the diesel proceedings for most of the 60,000 cases still pending,” Volkswagen said.

A lower court in the city of Koblenz had previously ruled the owner of a VW Sharan minivan had suffered pre-meditated damage, entitling him to reimbursement minus a discount for the mileage the motorist had already
benefited from.

The court at the time said he should be awarded €25,600 for the used-car purchase he made for €31,500 in 2014.

“We have in principle confirmed the verdict from the Koblenz upper regional court,” said BGH presiding federal judge Stephan Seiters.

Volkswagen had petitioned for the ruling to be quashed altogether by the higher court, while the plaintiff had appealed to have the deduction removed.

A Volkswagen spokesman said that outside Germany, more than 100,000 claims for damages were still pending, of which 90,000 cases were in Britain.

The carmaker also said it had paid out a total of €750 million to more than 200,000 separate claimants in Germany who had opted against individual claims and instead joined a class action lawsuit brought by a German consumer group.

The carmaker said last month it would set aside a total of 830 million for that deal.

In a separate court, Volkswagen agreed last week to pay €9 million to end proceedings against its chairman and chief executive, who were accused of withholding market-moving information before the emissions scandal came to light.