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(Bloomberg) -- Clariant AG is racing to mobilize Swiss investors to win sufficient support at a forthcoming vote on the chemical company’s planned $7 billion takeover of Huntsman Corp. to counter opposition from an activist investor group, according to a person with knowledge of the situation.
Aware a low turnout could harm its chances of garnering the majority vote required, Clariant has identified ways to help boost attendance, including announcing the date of the vote sooner than legally required to give more time to reach out to small, retail shareholders, said the person, who asked not to be identified because the matter is private.
With just weeks to go before investors flock to Congress Center Basel, Switzerland’s largest conference venue, Chief Executive Officer Hariolf Kottmann is pulling out all stops to get his way. Uncertainty about the all-share tie up crystallized after activist investor Corvex Management and 40 North, which together hold a stake in Clariant of more than 10 percent, said more value could be created through alternatives.
Representatives for Clariant weren’t immediately available.
The Muttenz, Switzerland-based company and Huntsman have already doubled down on efforts to reinforce the deal by hiring Goldman Sachs Group Inc. to help convince shareholders of the tie-up’s merit, as well as forming a steering committee of company managers to review merger plans at the end of August.
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