The board of Credit Suisse Group AG withdrew a standard request for shareholders to release its members and management from liability for the 2022 financial results, in the wake of the bank’s emergency takeover by UBS Group AG. The Swiss lender is due to hold its last annual shareholder meeting on April 4. Shareholder advisers had recommended investors to vote against discharging the bank’s top executives, a step which potentially leaves members open to legal claims.
Adviser ISS cited a “lack of oversight and poor stewardship” which contributed to the situation where Credit Suisse had to be taken over to avoid collapse. UBS agreed to buy Credit Suisse for 3 billion Swiss francs ($3.3 billion) in a historic deal orchestrated by the Swiss government and regulators after years of losses, scandals and mismanagement weakened the bank.
Credit Suisse also withdrew a proposal that would give certain top managers a “transformation award,” according to a statement late Wednesday. This was tied to the bank’s successful restructuring as outlined by Chief Executive Officer Ulrich Koerner in October, but is no longer applicable given the takeover. Shareholders are still being asked to vote on the appropriation of retained earnings as a matter of Swiss law, the bank said in a statement on Wednesday.