Dutch regulators have demanded Homburg Invest Inc. prevent its biggest shareholder from exerting any influence over the company until personal tax issues are resolved, a move that has confounded the Halifax-based company.
Richard Homburg owns 49 per cent of the company's shares, but, after stepping aside in March, is neither a manager nor board member of the real estate company that bears his name.
The Dutch stock market regulators issued a notice to the company last week insisting Mr. Homburg's role be minimized. They also asked that two Dutch citizens be placed on the company's board, in order to maintain the company's listing on the Euronext Exchange.
The company's board said it can't legally compel Mr. Homburg to lessen his stake in the company, and it has no control over how he votes with his shares.
"As a consequence, Homburg Invest is left in the difficult position of being unable to carry out these aspects of the instruction," the board said in a statement.
The company said it would purse Dutch board members, but said that it is "vigorously contesting" anything regarding Mr. Homburg.
Mr. Homburg put out a release saying the "issues are of a private and personal nature, and are unresolved and under discussion."
Mr. Homburg stepped down as chief executive officer and chairman at the company in March, saying at the time that he wanted to focus on a private real estate venture. Earlier this month, he proposed merging Homburg Invest with his private real estate company to form a new publicly traded company.
Homburg Invest owns properties in Canada, Germany, The Netherlands and the United States.