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Italy may compensate companies affected by anti-takeover forces, sources say

By Giuseppe Fonte

ROME (Reuters) – Italy is considering an offer to compensate companies fined for using its anti-takeover rights, two government officials said, in a move aimed at reducing the risk of a legal dispute.

Prime Minister Mario Draghi has repeatedly used the so-called “golden power” since he took office in February to prevent Chinese investors from buying controlling stakes in companies deemed to be economically important. strategy.

Following one of these cases, LPE, a semiconductor device maker based in Milan, appealed to the administrative court after the government in April blocked its acquisition by the Chinese company. Shenzhen Invenland Holdings Co. Ltd.

The idea of ​​introducing a financial remedy, the sources said, is to limit the need to go to the courts and help the government defend itself against allegations of disenfranchisement of shareholders.

Industry Minister Giancarlo Giorgetti said the proposal had not yet been finalized.

Anti-takeover laws are often used to prevent unwanted tenders in industries such as telecommunications, semiconductors, banking and energy.

Italy has used it five times since the golden powers were introduced in 2012. Four of these episodes beat the Chinese bids and three went to the ten-month-old government of Draghi.

A source said the first hearing in the LPE case is scheduled for July 2022, adding that Shenzhen will participate as a co-plaintiff.

Another lawsuit could arise from Draghi’s most recent use of gold in November, a third source said.

This episode shows Rome blocking a joint venture attempt between Zhejiang Jingsheng Mechanical and the Hong Kong subsidiary of Applied Materials to buy the US-based group’s silkscreen printing equipment business in Italy.

The source said Applied Materials’ Italian unit could launch action against the government, as it considers the deal important to increase its market share in China.

LPE declined to comment, while Applied Materials said it would not comment on negotiations with regulators.

(Edited by Gavin Jones and Mark Potter)

https://whbl.com/2021/12/10/italy-may-compensate-firms-hit-by-anti-takeover-powers-sources-say/ Italy may compensate companies affected by anti-takeover forces, sources say

JACLYN DIAZ

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