BANKING

Alpha woos investors’ cash

alpha-woos-investors-cash

The price of Alpha Bank’s new shares was set at 1 euro in the context of this week’s €800 million share capital increase, which as the bank stated “was completed with absolute success,” while the Hellenic Financial Stability Fund (HFSF) even reduced its stake by two percentage points.

The new shares were granted to retail investors and special investors in the context of the public offering in Greece, and to special, institutional and other eligible investors (the HFSF included) through a private placement in an international bid book.

The bank stated that “the book abroad was more than twice oversubscribed, securing the interest of existing stakeholders and new investors who gave their vote of confidence in the Alpha Bank development plan.”

Bids from abroad amounted to about €1.4 billion, while the available data show the domestic public offering was also covered in full; that means €640 million euros was raised from abroad and some €160 million from Greece. The net takings from the process come to €757.5 million.

Alpha stated that “the sale price of the new shares, with a marginal discount from the market price, and the very high interest of existing shareholders as well as new investors, highlights that the bank’s strategy is perceived as correct; it also underscores the interest of the investment community in the growth potential of the Greek economy and Alpha Bank’s profit prospects.”

Bank rescue fund HFSF said yesterday it took part in the share offering, reducing its holding to 9% from 10.9% previously but remaining the bank’s largest shareholder. “The fund remains Alpha Bank’s largest shareholder, proving its trust in the bank’s management and its future,” the HFSF stated. Its participation in the process is estimated at €41.9 million.

John Paulson, Alpha’s second largest stakeholder, held on to his stake of 5.6%, as did the other major stakeholders in the Greek lender, among them Schroder, the Vanguard Group, Norges Bank Investment Management, Capital Research & Management, BlackRock, Amundi Asset Management and others.

Interest also came from new stakeholders, such as Reggeborgh Invest.