95% take-up for Lloyds' cash call
The vast majority of Lloyds Banking Group's army of private shareholders have supported the bank’s £13.5 billion cash call.
More than 95% of the shares on offer were taken up by the troubled bank's 2.8 million private shareholders, in what is the UK’s largest ever rights issue. This beats predictions of a 90% take-up.
The result is also stronger than last year’s fundraising effort, when only 87% of the offer was taken up by investors.
The most recent rights issue saw shareholders offered 1.34 new shares at 37p each for every one share they already owned. This meant that an investor with an average 740 shares was eligible for 991 of the new ones - for around £367.
Eric Daniels, group chief executive of Lloyds Banking Group, says: "I would like to thank our shareholders for their considerable support for our capital raising programme. Our focus remains on delivering on our plans to become the UK's leading financial services company, which we believe will result in significant benefits for all our shareholders."
The rights issue is part of Lloyds’ plan to raise £22.5 billion to strengthen its balance sheet and avoid the government’s asset protection scheme. The government, which has a 43% stake in the bank, also took up its £5.7 billion offer.
Joint global co-ordinators Bank of America Merrill Lynch, UBS and Citigroup will now seek subscribers for the remaining shares.
Last week, the bank’s $986 million US bond - a key part of its fund raising plans - was heavily oversubscribed with investors wanting to swap $2.7 billion of existing securities for a new form of hybrid debt, known as enhanced capital notes.
A way a company can raise capital by creating new shares and invite existing shareholders in the company to buy these additional shares in proportion to their existing holding to avoid a dilution of value, which means keeping a proportionate ownership in the expanded company, so that (for example) a 10% stake before the rights issue remains a 10% stake after it. As an added incentive, the new shares are usually offered below the market price of the existing shares, which are normally a tradeable security (a type of short-dated warrant) and this allows shareholders who do not wish to purchase new shares to sell the rights to someone who does.