Bank of Cyprus registers in Dublin en route to London

Bank led by Irishman plans premium London listing to attract new investors

Bank of Cyprus:  outlined plans in March to secure a premium stock listing in London in the second half of this year to win new investors. Photograph: Yannis Behrakis/Reuters

Bank of Cyprus: outlined plans in March to secure a premium stock listing in London in the second half of this year to win new investors. Photograph: Yannis Behrakis/Reuters

 

Bank of Cyprus, led by Irishman John Hourican, has registered an Irish holding company as it advances plans to move its main stock listing from Athens to the London Stock Exchange.

Mr Hourican and his deputy chief executive are listed as the directors of Bank of Cyprus Holdings plc, which was incorporated in Dublin on July 7th, originally under the name AION Cyprus plc. The company’s name was changed to the current identity on August 4th, according to filings with the Companies Registration Office.

Corporate law firm Arthur Cox was the legal adviser on the incorporation in Ireland.

Mr Hourican outlined plans in March to secure a premium stock listing in London in the second half of this year to win new investors, three years after the bank was partly recapitalised, amid Cyprus’s financial crisis, through a “bail-in” of unsecured depositors.

The company said on June 30th, a week after UK voters decided to leave the EU, that the company that it plans to list on London remained unchanged, even as it was “carefully monitoring developments” in the market. It said at the time that, to be eligible for inclusion in the FTSE UK index series, it was considering incorporating a new holding company in another euro zone country.

Eligible jurisdiction

The bank successfully raised €1 billion of private capital in 2014 from investors, including US billionaire Wilbur Ross, who made €500 million profit buying a stake in Bank of Ireland during the financial crisis and subsequently selling.

A spokeswoman for Bank of Cyprus declined to comment.

Mr Hourican, a former head of Royal Bank of Scotland’s investment banking arm, joined Bank of Cyprus in 2013 before handing in his notice two years later. However, he subsequently reversed that decision, signing a fresh two-year contract in late 2015 to remain at the helm.