Friday, September 30

Clemente stays. Banco Santander loses its assault on Merlin Properties’ power

The board of directors of the Spanish Socimi Merlin Properties undertook to reform the governance structure of the company but will keep the CEO, Ismael Clemente, in his position.

The board of directors met Monday night after the property developer’s shares fell about 6 percent.

The confidential reported during the day that Banco Santander, which has a 24.55 percent stake in Merlin Properties, proposed the removal of Clemente last week, but did not get enough support.

The board of directors said it rejects the news but added that it had unanimously agreed to start “a process of governance reform, with the aim of improving governance in the interest of Merlin and all of its shareholders.”

No deadline for such reform was mentioned, although the council said it put “precise mechanisms and concrete measures in place.”

He added that the council, its president and the CEO reiterated their “mutual respect.” Banco Santander has three directors out of a total of 13.

In a first analysis, on Tuesday Banco Sabadell analysts reiterated the buy recommendation.

“Clemente enjoys the recognition of the sector and the market, although the events of Monday have left a certain feeling of instability in the leadership of the company.”