Market insiders yesterday spoke in support of Fubon Financial Holding Co (
They also disagreed with City Councilor Lee Wen-ying (
"Those were a lot of silly political accusations," Goldman Sachs' Hong Kong-based spokesperson Eddie Naylor said yesterday. "Fubon Financial went through very extensive auction processes, which we managed and were in line with international practices."
"The process of the groundbreaking transaction was sophisticated and transparent, and our fee charges were in line with market levels," Naylor said.
Josephine Juan (阮淑祥), a manager at Taiwan Ratings Corp (中華信評) -- the local arm of Standard & Poor's -- also praised the merger, saying Fubon was the best merger partner and offered the highest market price for TaipeiBank.
Citing a rating agency report, Juan said that both Fubon Commercial Bank (
After the merger that incorporated TaipeiBank, parent Fubon Financial still maintained a long-term outlook rating of "AA-," she said.
Unless investigators found any irregularities in the bidding process, the prices offered by bidders would never match the bank's book price, Juan added.
On Saturday, former TaipeiBank president Liao Cheng-ching (廖正井) argued that the bank, whose assets stood at NT654.3 billion before the merger, shouldn't have been sold to smaller rival Fubon Financial, whose stand-alone assets were NT$122 billion.
But Fubon Financial vice chairman Daniel Tsai (
Before the merger, Fubon Financial's net assets stood at NT$101.2 billion, far greater than TaipeiBank's net assets of NT$45.6 billion, according to Tsai.
Endorsing Tsai's view, Chou Tien-chen (
"When it comes to share-swap deals, net assets will truly reflect the value of companies across all sectors," Chou added.
Minister of Finance Lin Chuan (林全) yesterday told the legislature that the ministry was in no position to step into the merger deal's pricing as long as the boards of both private companies gave their approval.
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