3.5.5Issue, repurchase and cancellation of shares
The General Meeting of Shareholders or the Management Board, if authorized by the General Meeting of Shareholders and with the approval of the Supervisory Board, may resolve to issue shares.
The General Meeting of Shareholders or the Management Board, subject to the approval of the Supervisory Board, shall set the price and further conditions of issue, with due observance of the provisions contained in the articles of association. Shares shall never be issued below par, except in the case as referred to in article 2:80 (2) Dutch Civil Code. At the 2019 Annual General Meeting, the shareholders have delegated to the Management Board for a period of eighteen months and, subject to the approval of the Supervisory Board, the authority to issue ordinary shares up to 10% of the total outstanding shares at that time. In addition, authorization was granted to restrict or to exclude pre-emption rights, as provided for in article 6 of the Company’s articles of association for a period of eighteen months and subject to the approval of the Supervisory Board.
The Management Board may, with the authorization of the General Meeting of Shareholders and the Supervisory Board and without prejudice to the provisions of article 2:98 Dutch Civil Code and the articles of association, cause the Company to acquire fully paid-up shares in its own capital for valuable consideration. The Management Board may resolve, subject to the approval of the Supervisory Board, to dispose of shares acquired by the Company in its own capital. No pre-emption right shall exist in respect of such disposal. At the 2019 Annual General Meeting, the shareholders have delegated the authority to the Management Board for a period of eighteen months, as from April 10, 2019 and subject to approval of the Supervisory Board, to acquire up to 10% of the total outstanding shares at that time. The authorization granted at last year's Annual General Meeting will continue to apply for the share repurchase program as announced on February 14, 2019.
On February 14, 2019 SBM Offshore initiated a EUR175 million share repurchase program, with the objective of share capital reduction and, in addition, to provide shares for regular management and employee share programs. The repurchase program was completed on May 20, 2019. The execution of the share repurchase program was done under the terms of an engagement letter with a third-party and performed in compliance with the safe harbor provisions for share repurchases. In accordance with the European Market Abuse Regulation, the Company informed the market through weekly press releases and updates on its website. In 2019, 7,000,000 shares in the capital of SBM Offshore were cancelled. The cancellation of shares is executed under the authorization of the 2018 and 2019 Annual General Meeting resolutions. More information can be found in section 4.3.12 of this Annual Report.