FRANKFURT -- German automotive interiors maker Grammer rebuffed efforts by Bosnia's Hastor family, a minority shareholder, to replace nearly half of its supervisory board, saying the demand was "completely unexpected and not comprehensible."
The Hastor family also controls automotive supplier Prevent, which was in dispute with Volkswagen last year. It has built a stake of just over 20 percent in Grammer through investment vehicles Cascade and Halog.
It has said it aims to buy further shares this year, but Grammer said it was still not clear what the goals of the shareholding were or why Cascade was seeking to have five of the six supervisory board members representing shareholders replaced with its own people.
"Neither Cascade nor Halog have so far expressed any doubts regarding the performance of the company, the Management and Supervisory Board," Grammer said in a statement on Tuesday.
The group said it had repeatedly sought to speak with representatives of Cascade and the Hastor family but said no clarifying meeting had taken place so far.
Cascade and Halog are controlled by Damir and Kenan Hastor, the sons of Prevent founder Nijaz Hastor who are listed by Forbes as the richest Bosnians.
The Hastor family was not available for comment on Tuesday.
Grammer said its big customers, whom it did not name, had made it clear that the independence of its supervisory board and the preservation of its business strategy were crucial to them.
Grammer counts Germany's big automakers among its major clients, with Volkswagen alone accounting for 35 percent of sales at its automotive business.