L'ORÉAL's Annual General Meeting of Shareholders was held on Tuesday 30th May, 2000 under the chairmanship of Mr Lindsay OWEN-JONES, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer.
In his address, Mr OWEN-JONES stated: "1999 was an exceptional year for L'ORÉAL, in fact the best year of the decade in terms of growth. In view of the good progress of the group during the first quarter of 2000, I believe we are on the way to an excellent year."
Acting in its ordinary capacity, the AGM approved the parent-company accounts and examined the consolidated financial statements for 1999. Consolidated net sales amounted to FRF 70.52 billion (€ 10.75 billion). Net profit on ordinary activities before capital gains and losses and after minority interests was over FRF 5.4 billion (€ 823 million), representing earnings per share of FRF 80.28 (approximately € 12.24), an increase of +15.1% which means that double-digit EPS growth has been achieved for the fifteenth year in succession.
The AGM decided on the distribution of a net dividend of € 3.40 per share (approximately FRF 22.30), which by decision of the Board of Directors will be paid on 15th June, 2000 by any financial intermediary. The dividend growth rate compared with 1998 is 20.5%.
The AGM also appointed two new directors. Mr Michel SOMNOLET, who is replacing Mr CASTRES SAINT MARTIN, will carry out his duties for the remaining term of office of his predecessor, due to expire at the AGM to be held in 2002. Mr Rainer E.GUT replaces Mr Helmut MAUCHER, who did not wish his term of office to be renewed, and is appointed for a term of four years, due to expire at the AGM to be held in 2004.
Furthermore, the AGM renewed the authorisation granted to the Board of Directors for 18 months to buy back, if appropriate, up to 6% of the number of shares forming the company's share capital, and the authorisation to issue bonds on one or more occasions within a period of five years.
Moreover, in its extraordinary capacity, the AGM:
- decided to divide the par value of the share by ten, thus splitting each existing share into ten new shares, to take effect on 3rd July, 2000;
- and renewed the authorisation to increase the share capital, either by issuing shares for cash with the preferential subscription rights being maintained, or by the incorporation of reserves.