As part-owners of a company, shareholders are some of its most important stakeholders. General meetings — whether ordinary (or "annual") or extraordinary — give them an opportunity to debate and agree on key business issues. Find out more here.

General meetings are a vital component of companies’ governance and a key date on their corporate events calendar. They're usually held once a year as the ordinary annual general meeting (AGM) in the six months following fiscal year-end; or in isolated cases as an extraordinary general meeting (EGM). They enable shareholders to discuss matters within their authority and pass resolutions on matters prescribed by law or in the company's bylaws. 

The company issues a formal meeting announcement to shareholders before the event. In Spain, the announcement is made online (on the company's corporate website, official journals such as Boletín Oficial del Registro Mercantil — BORME —, and others) and in the printed press. Companies often send a notice to their shareholders as well.  

The general meeting announcement will include the date and time of the meeting, format (in person, virtually or hybrid, which may be subject to special conditions set out in the bylaws), agenda, ways to participate and other details.

What items do AGM agendas include?

The agenda sets out the topics that will be debated at the meeting. Though they may vary from one meeting to another, some are set in stone, such as: 

  • Approval of annual accounts (including the balance sheet and income statement) and management: Disclosure of the company’s situation so informed decisions can be made. 
  • Capital allocation for the previous fiscal year: Approval of where the company's profits will be spent. For instance, dividends
  • Board of directors: Appointment, re-election and ratification of members.
  • External accounts audit: Appointment and re-election of an external accounts auditor.
  • Bylaw amendments: Entry, removal or revision of one or several articles. 
  • Others: Capital increases, remuneration policy reviews and other matters prescribed by law or in the bylaws.

How to vote in person or by proxy

On top of attending in person or virtually, shareholders can choose to vote or delegate their vote on agenda items in advance. 

All Santander shareholders can cast their vote directly, vote by proxy and attend AGMs regardless of the number of shares they own. We offer them two ways of voting on the dates listed in the meeting announcements: 

The first is online through the websites, apps, telephone lines and branch-based platforms set up for that purpose. 

The second is by filling in a voting form with their personal details and indicating how they wish to vote on each agenda item. 

Shareholders can cast their vote or delegate it to our executive chairman, Ana Botín, or to anyone they wish by filling in the relevant document.

You can follow the Santander AGM on our corporate website or the Santander Shareholders and Investors app.

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