Ahold Issues Proposal to Return 3 Billion Euros to Shareholders

AMSTERDAM -- Ahold yesterday unveiled a proposal to amend its articles of association to permit a capital repayment and reverse stock split, in the wake of a March announcement of a proposal to return 3 billion euros to shareholders.

The retail conglomerate will present the proposal at an Extraordinary General Meeting of Shareholders next month in Zaandam, The Netherlands.

According to the company, it "has conducted an extensive review of the ways to return" the money, and has come to the conclusion that "within the Dutch regulatory environment, the most expeditious method is" the one outlined in its latest proposal.

The adjustments in the nominal capital and the reverse stock split would yield a repayment of capital to shareholders of 1.89 euros per common share, and a reduction in outstanding common shares. This reduction would reflect the amount of capital returned relative to the total market value of the outstanding common shares at the date that the amendment of the articles of association takes effect. The repayment to shareholders and stock split would be subject to the customary filings with the trade registry, a two-month creditor objection period, and the completion of the sale of American holding U.S. Foodservice.
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