Puma Gets New Major Shareholder | Business| Economy and finance news from a German perspective | DW | 10.05.2005
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Puma Gets New Major Shareholder

Two members of one of Germany's richest families, Guenter and Daniela Herz, have become the major shareholders in Puma, by amassing a stake of 16.91 percent in the maker of sportswear and equipment, Puma said on Tuesday. The acquisition, which took place in a number of different transactions, was effected by the investment vehicle of the Herz family, Mayfair Vermoegensverwaltung, Puma said in a statement. Of the 16.91-percent stake, a holding of 9.78 percent still had to be approved by the competition authorities, Puma added. At current market prices, the 16.91-percent stake in Puma is worth around 550 million euros ($704 million dollars). Puma shares responded to the announcement by racing ahead by 7.25 euros or 3.97 percent to 189.84 euros. Puma spokesman Ulf Santjer said that the company had not been previously aware of Mayfair as a shareholder. But under German law, investors are obliged to reveal their shareholdings in a company only if they acquire more than five percent of the share capital. Mayfair is the only major shareholder in Puma, with the rest of the company's share capital in free float on the Frankfurt stock exchange. Puma chairman Jochen Zeitz welcomed the advent of a new major shareholder. "We welcome Mayfair as a new shareholder and also welcome the investment in the company," he said.