SNS to repay 25 pct of Dutch state loan

September 24, 2009

The logos of Dutch banking and insurance group SNS Reaal are seen in Utrecht November 13, 2008. Dutch banking and insurance group SNS Reaal said on Thursday it will get a 1.25 billion euro ($1.6 billion) capital injection from the Dutch state and its controlling foundation after booking a third quarter loss due to fresh writedowns.  REUTERS/Michael Kooren. (NETHERLANDS)   AMSTERDAM, Sept 24 (Reuters) – Dutch bank and insurance group SNS Reaal <SR.AS> said on Thursday it would sell up to 26.15 million new shares to fund, in part, the repayment of a quarter of the state aid it received a year ago.
   The share issue, representing less than 10 percent of issued capital, will be conducted via an accelerated book-building starting on Thursday, the banking and insurance group said in a statement.
   SNS Chief Financial Officer Ference Lamp told reporters that SNS is expecting to open books on Thursday and close by the end of the day. J.P. Morgan will be sole global coordinator and joint bookrunner for the offering along with Rabo Securities and ABN AMRO Bank, which is now part of Royal Bank of Scotland.
   SNS will repurchase 185 million euros of the core Tier 1 securities issued by the Dutch state and 65 million euros of the core Tier 1 securities issued by the foundation that is its largest shareholder.
   “Our strengthened capital position and the equity issue announced today bring us in a better position to be able to repurchase 250 million euros of core capital by December 10,” SNS Chief Executive Ronald Latenstein said in a statement.
   The early repayment will save the bank up to 125 million euros, he said. Latenstein declined to say how soon SNS would be able to repay the rest of the state aid.
   Dutch insurer Aegon <AEGN.AS> has indicated that it plans to pay back a third of the 3 billion euros of state aid it received by December. In a report on Thursday in the Financieele Dagblad newspaper Aegon Chief Executive Alex Wynaendts said the rest would be paid off “as quickly as possible”. [ID:nLO7473]
   SNS said capital ratios at its banking operations remained relatively stable.
   SNS received a 750 million euro Dutch state loan last October as the government sought to stabilise the financial sector by offering massive funding. It also received 500 million euros in core Tier 1 securities issued by its controlling foundation.
   The foundation, the Stichting Beheer SNS REAAL, will participate in the share issue by buying about 1.9 million shares, which will lift its stake in the Utrecht-based financial group to just above 50 percent.
   In August, SNS Reaal disappointed investors with a surprise net loss and a lack of clarity on when it planned to repay the aid. [ID:nLI251637]
   Under the terms of the agreement with the Dutch state, SNS can repay up to one-third of the aid by Dec. 8 without incurring financial penalties or paying a coupon. (Reporting by Reed Stevenson; editing by John Stonestreet and Jon Loades-Carter)
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 Keywords: SNSREAAL/ 
Thursday, 24 September 2009 08:50:13RTRS [nLO12093  ] {C}ENDS

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