Netherlands approves ABN Amro IPO

The Dutch government has approved the sale of the nationalized bank ABN Amro, taken over by the Netherlands in October 2008 during the global economic crisis. The cabinet gave the go ahead on Friday for ABN Amro to relaunch on a stock exchange with an initial public offering, according to broadcaster NOS.

An IPO at ABN Amro is expected to bring in about 15 billion euros, while the Netherlands has invested about 22 billion euros into the bank, the Ministry of Finance said. The Netherlands also plans to maintain a third of shares to maintain control over the bank's governance, NOS reported. Measures to prevent a hostile takeover of the bank are also part of the plan.

Finance Minister Jeroen Dijsselbloem previously said he would support an IPO only if he felt public confidence in the bank was restored after executives at the bank approved a substantial pay raise for themselves. Prime Minister Mark Rutte was confident that the Dutch government sell off the bank by the end of the year.

ABN Amro dropped the plan to raise executive salaries after a lengthy public debate. The bank issued an apology for the salary debate as part of their annual report for 2014.

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