SNS Reaal Investors Won’t Get Compensation, Dijsselbloem Says

SNS Reaal NV shareholders whose securities were seized as the Netherlands took control of the Dutch bank and insurer last month won’t get any compensation, according to Finance Minister Jeroen Dijsselbloem.

“It’s my opinion that without expropriation, SNS Reaal and SNS Bank would have gone bankrupt,” Dijsselbloem said in a letter published on the ministry’s website today. Dismantling the lender would “have been insufficient to pay all unsecured creditors, and nothing would have remained for subordinated debt holders, let alone shareholders,” he wrote.

Dijsselbloem took control of SNS Reaal NV on Feb. 1 after losses on real estate loans brought the lender to the brink of a collapse. The nationalization, which became irrevocable after a ruling from the highest Dutch administrative court on Feb. 25, included issued shares, subordinated bonds and loans.

According to Dutch legislation, the government has to compensate parties it expropriated, taking into account the company’s future prospect without a nationalization. On that basis, the compensation offer is zero, Dijsselbloem said.

Investors who suffered losses can submit their objections to the Enterprise Chamber of the Amsterdam Court of Appeal, which will rule on whether Dijsselbloem’s offer is adequate.

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