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Kapitalanskaffning i aktiemarknadsbolag - en studie om generalklausulernas begränsningar vid riktade nyemissioner

Isell Lind Af Hageby, Ludwig LU (2015) LAGM01 20152
Department of Law
Abstract
In 1973 the possibility to direct share issues was introduced in Swedish law. Today it is an established alternative for the companies’ to raise capital. The possibility for listed companies to conduct directed new share issues is limited by the shareholder protection rules in the Swedish Companies Act (2005:551) and good practice in the Swedish stock market. This study shows that the general perception is that the possibilities are limited to direct share issues to existing shareholders without getting into conflict with the general clauses in the Swedish Companies Act.

The study examines the extent to which the shareholder protection rules, and in particular the general clauses, limits the companies’ possibilities to raise capital... (More)
In 1973 the possibility to direct share issues was introduced in Swedish law. Today it is an established alternative for the companies’ to raise capital. The possibility for listed companies to conduct directed new share issues is limited by the shareholder protection rules in the Swedish Companies Act (2005:551) and good practice in the Swedish stock market. This study shows that the general perception is that the possibilities are limited to direct share issues to existing shareholders without getting into conflict with the general clauses in the Swedish Companies Act.

The study examines the extent to which the shareholder protection rules, and in particular the general clauses, limits the companies’ possibilities to raise capital trough directed share issues. On this basis, the paper examines under what circumstances, and with what acceptable reasons, that it is possible for listed companies to direct share issues to existing shareholders, without getting into conflict with the general clauses. The study also examines the possibilities to apply share issue discounts. In addition, the study examines the association between company law and good practice in the stock market.

The result of the study shows that the general clauses and good practice in the stock market are closely connected when listed companies direct share issues. According to the study, good practice in the stock market does not impose higher demands than the Companies Act and the general clauses. Furthermore the study shows that it is consistent with the general clauses and good practice in the stock market to direct share issues to existing shareholders. One important conclusion is that directed share issues to existing shareholders and external investors should be treated equally. Despite this, the study shows that there are less acceptable reasons that can entitle a directed share issue to existent shareholders.

Further the study indicates that the companies’ ability to direct share issues to existing shareholders increases if a company is in a financial crisis. This also applies to the possibilities to apply greater share issue discounts. Another conclusion that can be drawn is that it is consistent with the general clauses to apply a "certain" share issue discount when conducting directed share issues. The Swedish Company Act or the Swedish Securities Council imposes no explicit guidelines that companies or shareholders can relate to. Because of this, the companies’ desire to raise new capital in a quick way often conflict with the shareholders’ interest in avoiding economic dilution.

To make it easier for listed companies to direct share issues in the future, and to increase the predictability for companies and shareholders, the study shows that the legal situation needs to be clarified. This can, in my view, be done by introducing explicit guidelines that companies and shareholders can relate to when a share issue is directed. The concluding part of this study submits suitable proposals on how such clarifications could be made. (Less)
Abstract (Swedish)
Möjligheten att rikta nyemissioner infördes år 1973 i svensk rätt. Numera utgör riktade nyemissioner ett etablerat alternativ vid kapitalanskaffning i bolag. Aktiemarknadsbolagens möjligheter att genomföra riktade emissioner begränsas av aktieägarskyddsreglerna i aktiebolagslagen (2005:551) (ABL) och god sed på aktiemarknaden. Uppsatsen visar att det finns en allmän uppfattning om att möjligheterna är begränsade att rikta nyemissioner till befintliga aktieägare utan att hamna i konflikt med ABL:s generalklausuler.

Uppsatsen undersöker i vilken omfattning aktieägarskyddsreglerna, och i synnerhet generalklausulerna, begränsar bolagens möjligheter till kapitalanskaffning genom riktade nyemissioner. Uppsatsen fokuserar på att utreda under... (More)
Möjligheten att rikta nyemissioner infördes år 1973 i svensk rätt. Numera utgör riktade nyemissioner ett etablerat alternativ vid kapitalanskaffning i bolag. Aktiemarknadsbolagens möjligheter att genomföra riktade emissioner begränsas av aktieägarskyddsreglerna i aktiebolagslagen (2005:551) (ABL) och god sed på aktiemarknaden. Uppsatsen visar att det finns en allmän uppfattning om att möjligheterna är begränsade att rikta nyemissioner till befintliga aktieägare utan att hamna i konflikt med ABL:s generalklausuler.

Uppsatsen undersöker i vilken omfattning aktieägarskyddsreglerna, och i synnerhet generalklausulerna, begränsar bolagens möjligheter till kapitalanskaffning genom riktade nyemissioner. Uppsatsen fokuserar på att utreda under vilka omständigheter, och med vilka godtagbara skäl, det är möjligt för aktiemarknadsbolag att rikta nyemissioner till befintliga aktieägare enligt generalklausulerna. Mot samma bakgrund fokuserar uppsatsen på att undersöka vilka möjligheter det finns för att tillämpa emissionsrabatter. Även förhållandet mellan aktiebolagsrätten och god sed på aktiemarknaden vid riktade nyemissioner undersöks.

Undersökningen visar att generalklausulerna och god sed på aktiemarknaden har ett nära samband vid riktade nyemissioner. Det framkommer att god sed på aktiemarknaden inte ställer högre krav än ABL och generalklausulerna. Uppsatsen visar även att det är förenligt med generalklausulerna och god sed på aktiemarknaden att rikta nyemissioner till befintliga aktieägare. En slutsats är att riktade nyemissioner till befintliga aktieägare och utomstående investerare ska behandlas lika. Trots detta visar undersökningen att det finns färre godtagbara skäl som kan motivera en riktad nyemission till befintliga aktieägare.

Vidare framkommer det att utrymmet för aktiemarknadsbolag att rikta nyemissioner till befintliga aktieägare ökar ytterligare om bolaget befinner sig i en finansiell kris. Detta gäller även möjligheterna att tillämpa större emissionsrabatter. En annan slutsats som kan dras utifrån uppsatsen är att det åtminstone är förenligt med generalklausulerna att tillämpa en ”viss” marknadsmässig emissionsrabatt vid riktade nyemissioner. Uttryckliga riktlinjer som bolagen och aktieägarna kan förhålla sig till uppställs däremot inte av ABL eller Aktiemarknadsnämnden (AMN). Mot denna bakgrund hamnar ofta bolagens önskan om att snabbt kunna anskaffa nytt kapital i konflikt med aktieägarnas intresse av att undvika ekonomisk utspädning.

För att göra det lättare för aktiemarknadsbolag att rikta nyemissioner i framtiden, och för att öka förutsebarheten för bolag och aktieägare, visar undersökningen att rättsläget behöver förtydligas. Detta kan, enligt min åsikt, ske genom att införa tydliga riktlinjer som bolagen och aktieägarna kan förhålla sig till vid riktade nyemissioner. I uppsatsens avslutande del lämnas förslag på hur sådana förtydliganden skulle kunna genomföras. (Less)
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author
Isell Lind Af Hageby, Ludwig LU
supervisor
organization
alternative title
Raising capital in listed companies - a study of the general clauses limitations on directed share issues
course
LAGM01 20152
year
type
H3 - Professional qualifications (4 Years - )
subject
keywords
Riktade nyemissioner, Aktiemarknadsrätt, Associationsrätt
language
Swedish
id
8513790
date added to LUP
2016-01-27 14:43:12
date last changed
2016-01-27 14:43:12
@misc{8513790,
  abstract     = {In 1973 the possibility to direct share issues was introduced in Swedish law. Today it is an established alternative for the companies’ to raise capital. The possibility for listed companies to conduct directed new share issues is limited by the shareholder protection rules in the Swedish Companies Act (2005:551) and good practice in the Swedish stock market. This study shows that the general perception is that the possibilities are limited to direct share issues to existing shareholders without getting into conflict with the general clauses in the Swedish Companies Act.

The study examines the extent to which the shareholder protection rules, and in particular the general clauses, limits the companies’ possibilities to raise capital trough directed share issues. On this basis, the paper examines under what circumstances, and with what acceptable reasons, that it is possible for listed companies to direct share issues to existing shareholders, without getting into conflict with the general clauses. The study also examines the possibilities to apply share issue discounts. In addition, the study examines the association between company law and good practice in the stock market.

The result of the study shows that the general clauses and good practice in the stock market are closely connected when listed companies direct share issues. According to the study, good practice in the stock market does not impose higher demands than the Companies Act and the general clauses. Furthermore the study shows that it is consistent with the general clauses and good practice in the stock market to direct share issues to existing shareholders. One important conclusion is that directed share issues to existing shareholders and external investors should be treated equally. Despite this, the study shows that there are less acceptable reasons that can entitle a directed share issue to existent shareholders.

Further the study indicates that the companies’ ability to direct share issues to existing shareholders increases if a company is in a financial crisis. This also applies to the possibilities to apply greater share issue discounts. Another conclusion that can be drawn is that it is consistent with the general clauses to apply a "certain" share issue discount when conducting directed share issues. The Swedish Company Act or the Swedish Securities Council imposes no explicit guidelines that companies or shareholders can relate to. Because of this, the companies’ desire to raise new capital in a quick way often conflict with the shareholders’ interest in avoiding economic dilution.

To make it easier for listed companies to direct share issues in the future, and to increase the predictability for companies and shareholders, the study shows that the legal situation needs to be clarified. This can, in my view, be done by introducing explicit guidelines that companies and shareholders can relate to when a share issue is directed. The concluding part of this study submits suitable proposals on how such clarifications could be made.},
  author       = {Isell Lind Af Hageby, Ludwig},
  keyword      = {Riktade nyemissioner,Aktiemarknadsrätt,Associationsrätt},
  language     = {swe},
  note         = {Student Paper},
  title        = {Kapitalanskaffning i aktiemarknadsbolag - en studie om generalklausulernas begränsningar vid riktade nyemissioner},
  year         = {2015},
}