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Manx dismay at rejection of Kaupthing S&F offer

Isle of Man finance director John Spellman is disappointed that the IoM treasury’s prop- osed scheme of arrangement was rejected by Kaupthing Singer & Friedlander Isle of Man depositors.

Speaking at a press briefing last week on the Isle of Man, Spellman said he believed the scheme would have benefited many of the investors. He said: “I was disappointed. An underpin at 70p, if it was me and I was a high-net-worth individ- ual, I would have taken it. The Isle of Man government was putting in £180m so it is in its interest to maximise the return on the assets.”

At last month’s vote, two of the three classes of creditors failed to give the 75 per cent approval required for the scheme’s approval, although the majority of depositors voting were in favour of it.

Spellman said the IoM government had to respect the outcome of the vote despite the fact the scheme had effectively been vetoed by a minority of bigger depositors and unsecured creditors. He said: “We have got to respect the choices of the people who voted, that is what democracy is all about. The treasury minister was disappointed in that a lot of work went in to provide surety to depositors which is now not the case.”

Spellman was unable to give a figure on the total sum spent on devising the scheme of arrangement but said that £1m quoted sounded a “bit high”.

He added that a public inquiry into the bank’s collapse would begin in July.

“The Treasury minister agreed to this in quarter four last year. It is a case of more mis-lobbying by certain parties on a lack of transparency which is not the case,” he said.

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