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Wednesday, May 22, 2024

By aggregating larger shares, shareholder groups can have an amplified voting power in FBD elections


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Two of FBD’s largest shareholders have seen their voting rights increase after preference shares were taken into account. Farmer Business Development PLC and FBD Trust, both of which possess sizable preference shareholdings, now boast voting rights greater than their respective important ordinary shareholdings. Farmer Business Development PLC holds a 24% share, yet has 27.85% of the voting rights, and FBD Trust has 8.4% of the shareholding and 12.39% of the voting rights.

Other shareholders experienced a slight decrease in voting rights. All the alterations are passive and do not involve the buying or selling of ordinary shares. It is common for voting rights in listed companies to fluctuate by minor degrees when the company issues new shares, such as those awarded to management as part of a share-based remuneration package.

FBD’s shareholder register has been especially active in recent times. Eamon Waters, founder of Panda Waste, raised his stake in FBD to 12% in March, as he continued to build his position in the Dublin-listed insurer. Sretaw Private Equity, Mr Waters’ personal investment firm, has mostly acquired his position via the buying of ordinary shares, consistent with the filings of the stock market. He has now acquired 10.45% of the company directly, and another 1.55% indirectly via contracts for difference, which let the holder to benefit from price movements in the underlying asset without having to possess it. Mr Waters’ aggressive investing over the past year has earned him a €59m investment in FBD and a potentially influential stake in the tightly-held stock. His most recent purchase coincided with the partial selling of Protector Forsikring’s stake from 9% to 7.56%. The Norwegian insurance company, which had quickly built a large stake in FBD amid other shareholders’ selling due to lack of dividends, has been reducing its exposure in the stock in recent months.

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