The German Corporate Governance Code is geared exclusively toward the conditions found in a German stock corporation (Aktiengesellschaft) and not toward a corporation with general partners (Kommanditgesellschaft auf Aktien) such as Merck KGaA. Merck KGaA has resolved to apply the Code logically to serve the interests of its shareholders. In order to enable shareholders to compare the situation at other companies more easily, we base corporate governance on the conduct recommendations made by the Code Commission relating to management and supervision (governance) and forego having our own, equally permissible, code. With one exception, the recommendations of the Code, the intent and meaning of which are applied, were complied with in the past and will continue to be complied with in the future.
For a clearer understanding, the following gives a general explanation of the Kommanditgesellschaft auf Aktien (KGaA) company form. The specific situation at Merck is then described and additional references are made to the General Meeting and shareholder rights.