The UK government has cleared an investment vehicle controlled by a Czech billionaire, which is the largest shareholder in Royal Mail (now known as International Distribution Services), to raise its stake beyond 25%. Royal Mail recently changed its name.
Vesa Equity investment, controlled by Daniel Křetínský, held just over 22% of the 500-year-old postal firm in July, and ministers conducted a national security review into its ownership in August. Today, the postal firm said in a statement to the London stock exchange:
“On 25 August 2022, the company announced (whilst still named Royal Mail plc) that it had received notification from the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy that he reasonably suspected that arrangements were in progress or contemplation which, if carried into effect, would result in Vesa increasing its shareholding in the company from 25% or less to more than 25% and that he was exercising his call-in power under section 1 of the NSI [National Security and Investment] Act.
“The company has now been notified by the Secretary of State that no further action is to be taken under the NSI Act in relation to the potential increase by Vesa of its shareholding in the company to more than 25%.”