(Corrects shareholder meeting date as March 27, not May 27)
PARIS Feb 13 Airbus parent EADS
confirmed on Wednesday it had proposed former Thales Chief
Executive Denis Ranque as its next chairman under a new
The appointment will be discussed by a new board following
an extraordinary shareholder meeting scheduled for March 27 that
will also vote on a planned share buyback, EADS said.
The European aerospace company announced the nomination of
Ranque, 61, on its Twitter feed. He will replace Arnaud
Lagardere whose French media group plans to sell its stake.
Ranque's nomination confirms plans reported by Reuters as
the list of board members was unveiled last week, and follows a
battle for the top post in Europe's largest aerospace firm.
The French government had backed Anne Lauvergeon, former
head of reactor maker Areva, for the role but EADS insisted on
picking one of the board's independent majority as the company
seeks to curb political influence from France and Germany.
Lauvergeon will sit on the board as a representative of
French interests. Besides Airbus civil jets, EADS makes Ariane
space rockets, French nuclear weapons and German fighter planes.
(Reporting by Tim Hepher)