LONDON: French corporate raider Vincent Bolloré, who chairs and controls world number five marketing group Havas, has exercised his legal right to call an extraordinary general meeting of UK-headquartered media and research specialist Aegis Group.

The meeting will consider his renewed demand for representation on the company's board.

Bolloré, who has amassed a 29.01% stake in Aegis, is the firm's largest single shareholder. He is determined to shoehorn two of his nominees into Aegis's boardroom - a move unanimously opposed by the company's directors and roundly rejected by its annual meeting three months ago [WARC News: 15-Jun-06].

Although Bolloré's overall intentions toward Aegis remain opaque, he is known to be eager to forge media planning/buying ties between the latter and Havas. His enthusiasm is not shared by Aegis which sees "no benefit" in working with a competitor.

Moreover, the UK company has expressed strong objection to sharing its boardroom with Bolloré nominees, fearing it could lead to an outflow of commercially confidential information.

Data sourced from Wall Street Journal Online; additional content by WARC staff