DETROIT (Reuters) -- General Motors disclosed Tuesday that shareholders or shareholder groups will now be allowed to nominate directors for the board in the company's annual proxy statement, but they will need to hold at least 3 percent of the automakers' shares for at least three years.
The ownership requirements, had they been in place in February 2015, would have been a barrier to proxy access for a group of hedge funds that pushed GM to put former U.S. auto task force member Harry Wilson on the company's board, and accelerate the return of cash to shareholders. That group held about 1.9 percent of GM shares at the time.
The new rules also state that shareholder groups that meet the share ownership standard may nominate "up to two individuals, or 20 percent of the board, whichever is greater."
GM directors adopted the new procedure on March 4 as a new article to the company's bylaws, the company stated in a filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission that was released Tuesday evening.
GM didn't have an immediate comment elaborating on the new rules.