- ECB consulted on guide relating to how to assess buyers of qualifying stakes in banks.
- A shareholder owning 10% or more of a given bank, or exercising significant influence over it, said to have qualifying holding; need ECB authorization to acquire qualifying holding or pass thresholds, e.g. 20%, 30% or 50% of a bank’s capital or voting rights.
- Qualifying holding acquisitions typically triggered by mergers and acquisitions projects.
- The guide clarifies ECB supervisory practices for qualifying holding assessments.
- Explains who is obliged to undergo qualifying holding assessments, documentation required to apply, and how ECB assesses transactions; gives information on complex acquisition structures, application of principle of proportionality, procedural elements.
- Aims to increase transparency towards market participants in explaining what the ECB’s supervisory practice is when assessing the acquisition of qualifying holdings.
- It builds on the legal framework and on experience assessing this type of transaction.
- The guide will complement the ECB’s Guide on the supervisory approach to consolidation in the banking sector, as the two guides have a complementary focus.
- Comments invited from banks, investors, and other stakeholders in bank acquisitions.
- ECB will publish comments along with a feedback statement and the final guide.
- The consultation period ends on 9 November 2022.