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Kuwaiti Court Delays Zain Agm Appeal To Nov 23

Zain's lawyer requests urgent verdict; First degree court ruled in Sept. against board elections

October 26, 2011 5:19 by

A Kuwaiti court on Wednesday adjourned until Nov. 23 an appeal from Zain against a ruling that invalidated the telecom operator’s annual shareholders’ meeting.

Last month, a Kuwaiti court ruled Zain’s April shareholders meeting void, upholding a case brought by former board member Sheikh Khalifa Ali al-Khalifa al-Sabah, who opposed the process to elect the board — to which he was not re-elected.

“International banks are enquiring about the case and its effect on the company after the first degree ruling … we request for a verdict on the appeal as soon as possible so that the company’s operations do not get affected,” Zain’s lawyer Hussein al-Ghareeb told the court.

Shareholders at the meeting elected a new board including a top executive from Kuwait’s family conglomerate Kharafi Group, and approved a $3 billion dividend for 2010. The dividend has already been distributed.

Last year, Sheikh Khalifa filed a lawsuit to halt due diligence in a $12 billion deal to sell a 46 percent stake in Zain to the UAE’s Etisalat . The deal fell apart in March after Etisalat walked away.

Etisalat, the Gulf’s largest telecoms firm, cited Zain’s divided board as part of the reason it had quit the deal.

By Eman Goma

(Editing by David Holmes)

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