William Malcolm

Petrus Urges Moneta Shareholders To Reject PPF Offer

Petrus Advisers, which owns about five percent of Monety Money Bank’s shares, advised other Moneta shareholders not to support a merger with PPF’s banking division at the June General Meeting. This was stated by the fund manager Oliver Škutil in an interview with Seznam Zprávy. The fund does not agree with the transaction, it pointed out its reservations to the Czech National Bank and the European Banking Authority (EBA), said Škutil.

PPF Investment Group now has a stake in Moneta of about 28 percent. PPF wants to merge its banking division with Moneta, which includes Air Bank, Czech and Slovak Home Credit and Benxy. The deal must be confirmed by Moneta’s general meeting, the bank today announced its convening on June 22.

Petrus Advisers considers the proposed course of the transaction to be aggressive in order to limit the rights of minority shareholders, he told the Škutil server. “We are convinced that the proposed transaction does not make sense for Moneta’s shareholders, except of course for the PPF Group,” he said. “We strongly recommend to Moneta’s shareholders not to support the proposed transaction at the General Meeting on June 22,” he added.

Through the acquisition, Moneta will acquire from the PPF Group one hundred percent of the shares of the Air Bank Group for a total purchase price of CZK 25.90 billion. This will be paid from CZK 2.59 billion of the bank’s surplus capital and from CZK 23.31 billion obtained by paying the issue price by the PPF Group for the subscription of 291,375,000 newly issued Moneta shares. The new shares will be issued at CZK 80 per share and will increase the bank’s total capital. The purchase price will be paid upon settlement of the acquisition.

The total number of issued Moneta shares will thus increase from 511 million to 802,375,000. The acquisition will dilute the current position of shareholders by 36.31 percent. Following the acquisition, PPF will own an estimated 55.38 percent of the bank’s shares and will therefore have to make a mandatory takeover bid consisting of the purchase of up to 100 percent of Moneta’s shares at a price of at least CZK 80 per share. Unless the Czech National Bank sets a different price.

The value of the bank should be at least CZK 40.9 billion, which represents 1.5 times the value of equity at the end of 2020 and 15.7 times the net profit for last year. The settlement of the acquisition is tentatively expected on October 1, 2021. In addition to the approval of the Extraordinary General Meeting of Shareholders, this must be preceded by approval by the Czech National Bank and the National Bank of Slovakia and obtaining the antitrust approval of the European Commission.

The PPF group of billionaire Petr Kellner, who died in March, is investing in many sectors, from financial services and telecommunications to real estate and engineering to biotechnology. PPF owns assets worth approximately 40 billion euros (one trillion CZK), last year the group ended in a loss for the first time in its thirty-year history.

Moneta Money Bank has been operating under its current name since 2016. At that time, the bank’s name was changed from the former GE Money Bank in connection with its listing on the stock exchange in May of the same year. Moneta is one of the largest companies traded on the Prague Stock Exchange.