Irish building society to give windfall

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The Independent Online
ABOUT 220,000 members of First National, the Irish building society, are expected to qualify for free shares with each qualifying member receiving 450 free shares, which could be worth almost pounds 1,000.

The company, which is posting its demutualisation plans to members, will be known as First Active PLC and its shares will be listed on the Dublin and London stock exchanges.

First National's advisers, have estimated that if the company had been listed on 6 March, each free share would have traded at a minimum of IRpounds 2.60 (pounds 2.16), making 450 shares worth about pounds 972.

Members who qualify as a saver and a borrower will receive 900 free shares. The exact value of the shares will not be known until the time of the flotation.

First National expects to raise fresh equity capital of up to IRpounds 150m (pounds 125m).

If all necessary conditions are fulfilled, the flotation is expected to take place next autumn.