NICOSIA - The names of all candidates for Bank of Cyprus’ new board will be announced today with insiders saying the outcome could be ‘totally unpredictable’.
“The names will be announced on our site early tomorrow (Thursday), we will be accepting applications till late today,” interim board chairman Sofoclis Michaelides said yesterday.
“The outcome could be totally unpredictable. It will be a combination of local and foreign board members and no one can say how many the foreigners will be. We seem to have a plethora of last minute applications,” he added.
Strong indications are that the board of the island’s biggest lender which exited resolution regime in July will have a considerable presence of Russian directors.
Lawyers who consulted with the Central Bank of Cyprus on behalf of their clients were expected to nominate at least five Russian directors.
All candidates must pass the ‘fit and proper’ test of the Central Bank as well as the criterion of independence.
The five Russians proposed by the offices of Vassiliades, Anastasiades, Scordi & Papapetrou and audit firm Tsielepis are said to meet the criterion of independence. Most of them have an international career in finance.
The lender’s Annual General Meeting is on Tuesday, and the proposed list will also include members of the association of depositors of collapsed Laiki which was absorbed by BoC.
The association, representing some 2000 uninsured depositors, has also proposed a person from the insurance sector and a Greek businessman joining the board.
According to bank's Articles of Association, the board may consist of 10 to18 persons. Although the initial thought was to limit the size to13 people, the number may now be bigger. The new board chairman could be non-Cypriot.
The AGM will elect the new board, but will not deal with the Bank’s annual accounts which are yet to be published.
BoC’s share capital amounts to €4.7billion, 81.4% of which is owned by 21,000 depositors-turned-shareholders due to the bail-in in March. And another 18,1% is owned by the collapsed Cyprus Popular Bank.
Old shareholders and capital security holders are limited to a 0.5% stake.
The Bank has announced that the accounts will be ready by October 10 to be reviewed by the new board.