The general meeting of Portuguese bank Banco Comercial Português (BCP) will resume on 21 November, when it will vote on whether to increase the limit on voting rights from 20% to 30%, which is one of the conditions for Chinese group Fosun to take a stake in the bank, according to a market statement issued on Wednesday.
At its meeting on Wednesday, the shareholders present approved the proposal to keep the shareholder agreement in place, a motion that was presented by the four largest shareholders of BCP.
The four major shareholders of the bank – Angolan oil company Sonangol (17.84% of the share capital), Spanish bank Sabadell (5.07%), Energias de Portugal group (2.56%) and Interoceânico (2.05%) – considered in the documents accompanying the notice calling the meeting that it is of, “manifest social interest that the bank can continue to have, as has been the case for more than 20 years, of a limit on voting rights that protects and offers a better balance to the various shareholdings.”
Investors argue, however, that the limit should be changed from 20% to 30%, and this change is seen as crucial in order to allow Fosun to take a share in BCP.
Points 3 and 4 of the agenda of the general meeting, related to the increase in the maximum number of BCP board members to accommodate another of Fosun’s conditions were approved.
In August the Chinese made a firm bid to buy a stake of 16.7% of the share capital of Banco Comercial Portugues and said it also wanted to increase its stake through secondary market operations or future capital increases in order to take a stake of between 20% and 30%.
In the first nine months of the year, BCP posted a loss of 251.1 million euros compared with a profit of 264.5 million euros in the same period of last year.
From January to September the bank had to build up over 1 billion euros in provisions, mainly to respond to impairments resulting from bad debts, amounting to 816.7 million euros. (macauhub)