Plus500 repurchases £101M (8.2%) of its shares from Odey
Retail FX and CFDs broker Plus500 (LON:PLUS) has announced that the company has purchased 7,327,605 of its own shares from Odey Asset Management LLP. The shares represent approximately 8.2% of Plus500’s issued share capital (excluding shares already held in treasury).
The purchase was done at a price of 1,383 pence per share, for a total consideration of approximately £101.3 million (USD $127 million). The acquired shares will be held in treasury.
Plus500 shares reacted positively to the news, with PLUS trading up by 7.6% on Tuesday morning to 1,496 pence.
Odey Asset Management has long been one of Plus500’s largest outside shareholders. At last report the London based asset management firm had held 10.97% of Plus500’s shares, such that the current sale will take Odey down to a holding of about 2.77%.
Interestingly, the buyout announcement comes just two days after Odey founder and controlling shareholder Crispin Odey was removed from his own company by Odey’s executive committee, following a Financial Times report that 13 women had accused Odey of sexual misconduct over a 25 year period. Reports are now emerging that Odey is blocking client withdrawals from some of its funds, despite company claims yesterday that it wouldn’t “gate” any of its funds.
Given the significant strength of the company’s balance sheet and the prevailing circumstances, the Board stated it believes the purchase is in the best interest of all shareholders. The company said it has acted quickly to execute this opportunity to acquire shares at an attractive price, in-line with the Plus500’s capital allocation and shareholder return policy. As announced on 19 April 2023, the company had cash balances of over $950 million as at 31 March 2023.
The purchase has been conducted separately from Plus500’s latest share buyback programme to purchase up to $70.0 million of the company’s Ordinary Shares, announced on 14 February 2023, which will continue as planned. As at 12 June 2023, Plus500 had repurchased approximately $52 million of the company’s Ordinary Shares pursuant to the Share Buyback Programme.
Following the Purchase, the company has authority to make further purchases of up to 683,244 Ordinary Shares pursuant to the authority granted to it at the company’s 2023 AGM, held on 2 May 2023.
Total Voting Rights
The company will hold the repurchased shares in treasury. Following the purchase, the remaining number of Ordinary Shares in issue will be 82,512,335 (excluding treasury shares), and the company will hold 32,376,042 Ordinary Shares in treasury. Therefore, the total voting rights in Plus500 will be 82,512,335. This figure for the total number of voting rights may be used by shareholders as the denominator for the calculations by which they will determine if they are required to notify their interest in, or a change to their interest in, the company under the FCA’s Disclosure Guidance and Transparency Rules.