Wilbur Ross to Serve as Vice Chairman of Bank of Cyprus

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Wilbur Ross has been elected as vice chairman of Bank of Cyprus. He will be serving alongside the bank’s newly-elected chairman, Dr.Josef Ackerman, according to the press release of WL Ross & Co.

“I am delighted to help chairman Ackermann and president and CEO John Hourican to revitalize this institution. The new European rules limiting dictatorships of bank officers require that I resign from several other board of directors,” according to Wilbur Ross.

Wilbur Ross resigned from various board seats

In compliance with the requirement of the European rules, Wilbur Ross vacated his seat from the board of directors of Assured Guaranty Ltd. (NYSE:AGO), International Automotive Components Group and International Textile Group Inc. (OTCMKTS:ITXN).

Wilbur Ross also stepped down as member of the boards of NBNK Ltd, Navigator Holdings Ltd (NYSE:NVGS), Ocwen Financial Corp (NYSE:OCN) and Talmer Bancorp (NASDAQ:TLMR).

In an interview with CNBC, Wilbur Ross stated that the Bank of Cyprus has a good potential for turnaround following its board shakeup.

Wilbur Ross controls 19% of Bank of Cyprus shares

In September Central Bank of Cyprus instructed the entire board of the Bank of Cyprus to resign. The Bank of Cyprus requested the Central Bank of Cyprus to allow Wilbur Ross to serve on its board after he invested €400 million through a private placement.  The turnaround financier controls 19% of the outstanding shares of Bank of Cyprus.

At the time, Chrystalla Georghadji, governor of the Central Bank of Cyprus gave Wilbur Ross the opportunity to be elected to the board of the Bank of Cyprus.

Biggest investment in the history of Bank of Cyprus

The investment of Wilbur Ross was part of the €1 billion share sale initiated by the bank. It was considered the biggest investment in the history of the Bank of Cyprus.

In July, the Archbishop of the Eastern Orthodox Church of Cyprus rejected the share sale. The church was one of the largest shareholders of the bank with 3% stake and held several board seats.

All Bank of Cyprus shareholders, old and new, are called on to vote against the planned capital increase unless the bank agrees to restore the old shareholders along the lines of our proposals,” said Archbishop Chrysostomos.

At the time, the central bank governor warned the existing board of the Bank of Cyprus to avoid implementing executive decision that would harm or burden the future management with unnecessary responsibilities.

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