One of Northern Rock’s largest shareholders has backed a campaign to give investors a greater say in the future of the stricken mortgage lender. The Times, Daily Telegraph
AP2, one of two funds that manage pension schemes for Swedish public sector workers, said that it would vote in favour next week of all four demands tabled by RAB Capital and SRM Global.
With a 1.8% holding in the bank, AP2 is the Rock’s sixth-largest shareholder. RAB and SRM hold 18% between them, meaning that almost a fifth of the shareholder base is known to be preparing to vote against the board.
Meanwhile the Government and its advisers are scrambling to come up with a private-sector solution for Northern Rock ahead of the bank’s showdown with shareholders at an emergency meeting on Tuesday.
Goldman Sachs, which is advising the Treasury, is planning to meet Northern Rock’s board and the Government later this week, when it will unveil a proposal for the stricken lender.
There were rumours last night that Goldman wants to introduce another financing group to the consortium of banks that would provide a loan of up to £15bn to one of the bidders for the bank.
That could be Goldman itself. Alternatively, there was speculation that the cash-rich sovereign wealth funds are interested.