Cyprus Mail

Bondholders urged not to attend BoC AGM

THE association of bank bondholders who claim they were duped into buying high-yield products called on its members yesterday not to take part in the Bank of Cyprus (BoC) AGM as they would lose their right to compensation

“To secure your interests you must not attend the next BoC AGM on September 10, 2013, nor give proxy, unless you have old stock and you will appear in the capacity of the old shareholder,” the association said in a statement.

BoC bonds were converted to shares.

Those shares were subsequently diluted as part of the decision to seize depositors’ cash – in return for equity – to recapitalise BoC.

Old shareholders were all but wiped out, with the bank’s creditors now forming the new shareholder base.

The association warned that taking part in any shareholder meeting or carrying out any act stemming from their right as shareholders would automatically deprive them the right to compensation and the right to seek recourse through court.

Many investors claimed they were duped into buying the bonds by BoC and Laiki Bank, which is in the process of closing down.

The bonds offered a very attractive return of some 7 per cent in some cases, a better return than keeping the money in a savings account.

Some bond holders have sued the banks claiming they were not properly informed of the risks.

BoC said yesterday its share capital as of August 30 stood at €4,698,219,049 divided into 4,698,219,049 ordinary shares of a nominal value of €1.0 each.

Some 81.4 per cent is held by about 21,000 shareholders whose deposits recapitalised BoC and 0.5 per cent is held by about 88,000 shareholders who have had their shares and debt securities converted in late March, the BoC said.

Laiki holds 18.1 per cent, the only shareholder with more than 5.0 per cent of the Bank’s share capital.

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