Blackrock, Norges Bank and Vanguard, over 10% of Sabadell’s capital, not in favour of defensive manoeuvres against takeover bids

bbva sabadell

Link Securities | The Minister of Economy, Trade and Enterprise, Carlos Cuerpo, has conveyed to the president of the supervisory board of the European Central Bank (ECB), Claudia Buch, his “concerns” regarding the hostile takeover bid launched by BBVA (BBVA) on Banco Sabadell (SAB) in a bilateral meeting. This was confirmed by Mr Cuerpo in statements to the media on his arrival at the meeting of Eurozone finance ministers.

“We have discussed the state of the situation and the good health of our financial system and I have also told him about these concerns regarding the impact in terms of concentration and, therefore, the possible harmful effect in terms of competition that this operation could have”, said Cuerpo. When asked about Buch’s reaction to this, Cuerpo said that she was “curious” to know what the government’s arguments were for rejecting the operation, something that the minister said he had explained to her in a “very relaxed” talk on the situation of competition and concentration in financial markets, as it is a situation “of relevance throughout the EU”.

On the other hand, Sabadell communicated, in response to the National Securities Market Commission’s (CNMV) request received yesterday, the temporary suspension of the programme to buy back shares approved by Sabadell’s Board of Directors on 25 April 2024 on the occasion of the publication of the prior announcement of the voluntary takeover bid launched by BBVA for all the shares representing SAB’s share capital.

Sabadell hereby states that the operation of the Buyback Programme had been interrupted before the opening of the session of 9 May 2024 and that the amount paid for the shares purchased up to 8 May 2024 (inclusive) under the Buyback Programme amounts to €92,864,152.55, which represents approximately 27.31% of the maximum monetary amount of the Buyback Programme, leaving approximately 72.69% of the aforementioned maximum amount pending execution.

On the other hand, the daily Expansión highlights in today’s edition that BlackRock, Norges Bank and Vanguard, three large shareholders of Sabadell which hold more than 10% of the capital, do not support defensive manoeuvres against takeover bids and, therefore, will not support SAB’s defensive strategy. The newspaper notes that in its investees, Norges usually votes in favour of eliminating anti-takeover measures.

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