Del Rivero removed as Sacyr chairman over Repsol dispute

Oil giant feared backdoor attempt to seize control of company

Luis del Rivero has been ousted as chairman of Sacyr Vallehermoso over his dispute with leading oil firm Repsol YPF, of which the Spanish construction group is the major shareholder with a 20-percent stake, sources close to the company said Thursday.

Del Rivero forged an alliance with the state-owned Mexican oil firm Pemex to vote jointly in strategic decisions taken by Repsol's board, a move Repsol perceived as a backdoor effort to seize control of the company. Pemex is increasing its stake in Repsol to 9.8 percent from 4.8 percent.

Sacyr board members and shareholders Demetrio Carceller and Juan Abelló have been in dispute with Del Rivero over his pretensions toward Repsol.

Earlier Thursday, Sacyr announced that Del Rivero had entered into a pact with Sacyr shareholders José Manuel Loureda and Francisco Javier Gayo that would give them combined voting rights of 26.95 percent of the construction group's capital, more than Abelló and Carceller, who together own 25.3 percent.

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Pemex to take legal action if Repsol rights not respected

Separately, Pemex's chief executive officer, Juan José Suárez Coppel, was grilled on Wednesday by two parliamentary commissions on the company's decision to increase its stake in Repsol and link up with Sacyr.

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