Hypo Real Estate Is Nationalized with Squeeze-Out

FRANKFURT (Reuters) – The German government completed the nationalisation of stricken lender Hypo Real Estate (HRXG.DE) on Tuesday, setting the stage for a prolonged legal battle with minority shareholders, including J.C. Flowers.

A Munich court approved the squeeze-out of minority shareholders, Hypo Real Estate said on Tuesday, which allowed for the German government’s rescue fund SoFFin to get 100 percent of the real estate lender.

Against the wishes of a raft of minority shareholders, the proposal to squeeze them out was passed at an extraordinary general meeting on Oct. 5, fixing an offer of 1.30 euros a share.

Trading was suspended on Tuesday with the share at 1.441 euros.

Private equity group J.C. Flowers & Co LLC last week took legal action on behalf of funds that it advises, seeking to prevent the full nationalisation of HRE, Flowers said in a statement at the weekend. [ID:nLC353962]

The SdK shareholders association and hedge fund Exchange Investor have taken similar legal action.

J.C. Flowers has also filed a formal complaint with the European Union.

SoFFin said on Monday that it had operated within the bounds of the law. ($1=.6782 Euro) (Reporting by Edward Taylor; editing by Karen Foster)