An overwhelming majority of Royal Caribbean shareholders approved a company proposal to delist from the Oslo Stock Exchange (OSE) while electing the former head of McDonald’s Corporation to fill the board vacancy left by the resignation of its longest-serving outside director.
Both actions took place today during RCL’s annual shareholders meeting in Miami, Fla.
The proposal to delist from the OSE, which passed with 93 percent of the vote, will allow the company to work with the Norwegian exchange to obtain its approval on mutually acceptable terms.
While the New York Stock Exchange (NYSE) remains RCL’s primary listing for shares of common stock, the company has maintained a secondary listing on the OSE since 1997 with the goal of improving overall liquidity of shares while gaining access to another capital market.
Today’s vote was the second time the RCL board got shareholder approval to delist from the OSE. In 2009, presented with the regulatory burdens, expenses and other difficulties of keeping a secondary listing, RCL shareholders cleared the way for the board to pursue that action.
However, economic conditions in the time since drew more of the board’s attention and a decision was deferred.
Aware of the potential impact of delisting on RCL’s Norwegian shareholders, the board said it would pay all transfer costs of moving their shares to the NYSE and work with the OSE to smooth the way for those transactions.
Today’s delisting vote was preceded by the re-election of seven directors on RCL’s 11-member board whose terms expired at the shareholders meeting. An eighth such director, Bernard Aronson – the board’s longest-serving member – announced in April that he would not seek re-election in order to serve as President Barack Obama’s special envoy to the Colombian peace talks.
Shareholders filled the vacancy by electing Donald Thompson, who served as president and CEO of McDonald’s Corporation from 2012 until March 2015. Thompson was also the company’s president and COO from 2010 to 2012, and president of McDonald’s USA from 2006 to 2010.
Before joining the fast-food giant, Thompson served six years as an electrical engineer for the Northrop Corporation, where he specialized in power supply design and manufacturing of high-tech radar systems.
Thompson has also served as a director of Northern Trust Corporation since March.