Founded 125 years ago, Roche will still remain in family hands. André Hoffmann and Jörg Duschmalé, their representatives on the board of directors, reiterated their commitment to retain a majority of the dividend-right certificates and the related voting rights.
The Artuma Holding vehicle holds 45.01% of the shares on behalf of fifteen heirs, while Maja Oeri has 5.057% in her own name. The competitor Novartis has, since the end of 2007, a share of 33.33% which has ‘no influence’ on the strategy of Roche, said Friday André Hoffmann.
The two directors also took advantage of the event to confirm that they had welcomed ‘with interest’ a recent shareholding offer put forward by the Japanese conglomerate Softbank. “We are delighted to see that Roche is clearly seen as an attractive investment opportunity,” said André Hoffmann.
‘We have a majority and we do not sell’ summed up the great-grandson of Fritz Hoffmann-La Roche.
In early August, the Rhine pharmaceutical giant refused to comment on press reports presenting Softbank as a new reference shareholder, with an injection of five billion dollars.