The merger of Moneta Money Bank and the banking division of the PPF Group has another opponent. It is Monety’s minority shareholder, the California State Teachers’ Retirement System (CalSTRS), a fund of teacher retirement savings in California. He is Moneta’s first shareholder to hear the recommendation of respected overseas shareholder advisors to vote against the transaction. The general meeting of Moneta, which has a decision on the most important domestic bank merger on the agenda, is scheduled to meet in less than two weeks.
According to Bloomberg, CalSTRS has announced its intention to vote against the merger on the website of the consulting company Glass Lewiw, which provides services mainly to minority shareholders for decision-making at general meetings. “Glass Lewiss companies have a significant influence on the decisions of institutional shareholders with less active mandates,” explains Cyrrus analyst Tomáš Pfeiler.
According to the daily E15, the teaching fund in Moneta owns 1.255 million shares, which corresponds to an ownership stake of 0.25 percent. Such small shareholders often hear on the recommendation of consulting companies. “To vote differently if they don’t do their own research would be difficult to explain why they did it,” adds Pfeiler.
The activist fund Petrus Advisers, which holds over five percent of shares in Moneta, has previously expressed its opposition to the transaction. The fund also recommended that other shareholders vote against the merger. “We are bothered by, among other things, the parameters of the transaction and Moneta’s valuation. And also the exorbitant price that the bank has to pay for the assets of Air Bank and others. In our opinion, the entire structure of the transaction is in conflict with the interests of Moneta’s shareholders, except, of course, for PPF, “said Oliver Škutil, the fund’s manager, at the end of May.
PPF insists that the transaction is mutually beneficial. “The PPF Group firmly believes that the merger of its banking and consumer finance assets with Moneta Money Bank on agreed terms is justified. The goal is to create a leader in the retail banking market in the Czech Republic and thus increase value for all shareholders of Moneta, “says Leoš Rousek, spokesman for the PPF Group.
With a share of almost 30%, PPF has a significant position in Moneta. “They will not want to back down. However, if the transaction is still not voted on in June, PPF can make the parameters of the transaction more attractive, ”adds Pfeiler.