By Inti Landauro
PARIS-- French President Francois Hollande said the new agreement reached by shareholders of European aerospace company EADS (EAD.FR) gives the company more freedom to develop and protects the national interests of France, Germany and Spain.
Mr. Hollande said the company committed to maintain its headquarters in the French city of Toulouse and to maintain the headquarters of its units Astrium, Airbus and Eurocopter in France and Cassidian in Germany.
Under the plan, which must still be approved by the board and shareholders of EADS, the French and German governments will hold equal stakes of up to 12% in the company while founding shareholders Daimler AG (DIA.XE) and Lagardere SCA (MMB.FR) will sell their stakes.
The company will also buy back as much as 15% of its own shares.
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