Bank Audi to raise capital by issuing common shares

Falling shares in Europe and the U.S. are not expected to make a big difference to the Beirut bourse.

BEIRUT: Bank Audi announced over the weekend that it is raising its capital by LL64.95 billion ($43.1 million) to LL525.77 billion ($348.8 million), through the issuance of 50,000,000 common shares at a nominal value of LL1,299 ($0.86) per share.

The issue premium would equal about $5.14 per share, which is the difference between the $6 per share issue price and the U.S. dollar correspondence of the nominal value per share.

The capital increase includes pre-emptively offering 40 million shares to existing shareholders pro rata to the number of common shares held by each. The remaining 10 million shares are to be allocated to new investors or to existing shareholders.

The new shares will be listed on the Beirut Stock Exchange.

In parallel, subscribers to the new shares are entitled to receive three warrants per common share. The holders of such warrants have the right to purchase shares in Bank Audi’s wholly owned Turkish subsidiary Odeabank at an exercise price of $0.95 per share within a 30-day period in the first half of 2019. The strike price attached to the warrant could be adjusted if the par or nominal value of Odeabank’s shares change.

The warrants are detachable and tradable.

The bank’s extraordinary general assembly approved the capital increase Aug. 26, 2014.

The BSE’s total trading value amounted to $14 million this week, with Bank Audi’s “listed” shares accounting for 45 percent of the total, as some investors aimed to buy the stock in order to benefit from the pre-emptive rights of the initial allocation of 40 million new common shares (record date Sept. 1, 2014).

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Daily Star on September 02, 2014, on page 5.




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