Belgium raises $2.3 billion from BNP Paribas stake sale
Belgium has sold 2.17 billion euros ($2.31 billion) worth of shares in BNP Paribas (BNPP.PA), cutting its stake in the French lender built during the financial crisis by about a third.
Belgian state participation agency SFPI said on Wednesday it had successfully placed 33 million shares with investors following an accelerated sale on Tuesday evening.
Investment banks marketed the shares at 64.96 euros apiece, implying a 1.8% discount to BNP Paribas’ closing price.
Shares in BNP Paribas were down more than 3% at 1000 GMT following the transaction.
SFPI, which now retains a 5.1% stake in BNP Paribas, said it has been looking to reduce its exposure to the financial services sector, but would continue to support the French bank.
It has agreed not to sell further shares for a period of 90 days.
“Following the transaction, SFPI-FPIM confirms its continued support of BNP Paribas and belief in the long-term strategy of the company,” the government agency said.
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