Investment Property Databank (IPD) is pleased to announce that six leading property investors have agreed to buy shares in IPD from certain shareholders, which will strengthen the IPD's ownership structure and put an end to a recent period of uncertainty.
A total of 6,480 Ordinary shares in IPD, representing about 32% of those in issue, will be acquired by British Land, Hermes, Insight Investment, Land Securities, Morley and Prudential.
The selling shareholders include four of the surveying firms who invested in IPD some 20 years ago, as well as a reduction in the shareholdings of some of IPD's senior management team.
"I am delighted that a period of uncertainty over the future of IPD has ended," Chairman of IPD Rupert Nabarro said. "IPD's new shareholder base reflects the close working relationship that we have with all sectors of the British and international property markets; we view this industry partnership to be our greatest asset."
"At all times IPD tries to do everything possible to preserve and reinforce its reputation for quality, independence and integrity. The new constitution will guarantee that we can continue to do this," Mr Nabarro added.
Rupert Clarke, Head of Property Investment at Hermes, who led the investors in the negotiations, said, "We and the other five new investors have been long time supporters of IPD and had no hesitation in taking up this opportunity to underpin IPD's long-term future. The continuing integrity and independence of IPD is a key component in the commercial property industry."
The share sales and purchases will be concluded immediately after an Extraordinary General Meeting to be held in early December 2005.
More than 75% of IPD's shareholders have already given irrevocable undertakings to vote in favour of proposed EGM resolutions. These will include a change in IPD's Articles of Association and the adoption of a new Shareholders' Agreement aimed at maintaining IPD's independence. The main amendments to IPD's constitution comprise:
- A limit of 9.99% on the number of shares in IPD that may be owned by any one shareholder (other than IPD's co-founder, Rupert Nabarro)
- The Board of IPD will have discretion to refuse to register transfers of shares to new shareholders that it does not consider to be suitable in terms of protecting IPD's integrity and operational independence or market reputation
- Any shares that shareholders may wish to sell in the future will be subject to preemption rights
- A majority of IPD's Board will be non-executive directors
- Approval from shareholders will be required if IPD wishes to issue new shares above a certain level or make significant transactions.