Bank of Ireland announces €50m share buyback as it begins capital repayment

Bank of Ireland has announced the approval of a €50 million share buyback program running until the end of May.

The group first announced the move on Feb. 28 and has now won regulatory approval for the program, which is set to run until May 25.

The maximum number of shares that may be redeemed under the program is 50,000,000, based on a minimum redemption price of €1.00 per share, and is subject to early termination rights if requirements of capital require it.

UBS will act as principal to conduct the program and repurchase the shares on behalf of the Group

Goodbody analysts said it was “reassuring from a shareholder perspective” that regulatory approval had been obtained and that this was a “positive development”.

“More broadly, the launch of the buyback program today marks the start of the capital return story for the Irish bank,” the analysts said in a note.

Bank of Ireland reported underlying pre-tax profit of 1.4 billion euros for 2021, thanks to a “strong performance rebound” in its annual results in February.

The bank then recommended 104 million euros in dividends and redemptions.

Total revenue rose 12% year-on-year to 2.9 billion euros, according to the lender’s annual results.

Business income, including the share of associates and joint ventures, increased by 15% compared to 2020.

Last year’s performance was supported by revenue growth in the Wealth and Insurance division, which increased by 24%, Corporate and Markets (13pc more) and Retail Ireland, where revenue increased by 3pc.

Operating expenses (excluding levies and regulatory charges) decreased by 4% in 2021 compared to 2020.

On March 29, Bank of Ireland announced the appointment of Mark Spain as Group Chief Financial Officer and Chief Executive, with Enda Johnson as Chief Strategy and Transformation Officer.

Spain, a Chartered Accountant, was most recently Chief Strategy Officer, where he led a number of significant initiatives, including Bank of Ireland’s strategy renewal and the acquisitions of the Davy and KBC Ireland portfolios in 2021.

On March 15, the Bank of Ireland announced some reductions in its mortgage rates, particularly for its higher value and green mortgage offerings.

She reduced the value of an eligible high value mortgage from €300,000 to €250,000 and reduced the rates on her four-year high value mortgage by basis points.

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