Already with numerous advisers on board to help with the Government's planned state owned enterprise (SOE) sell-downs, Treasury is now seeking a retail bank to help with what it anticipates to be huge interest in the shares from retail "ma and pa" investors'.
In a request for proposal Treasury says it expects there could be up to 250,000 retail investor applications, with associated payment processing requirements for each share offer, for which banking services are required.
The National Party-led Government plans to sell up to 49% stakes in Mighty River Power, Genesis Energy, Meridian Energy and Solid Energy, as well as selling down the Government's 73% stake in Air New Zealand to no less than 51%, through sharemarket floats. The first cab of the rank is scheduled to be Mighty River Power in the third quarter of this year. Treasury estimates the share sales will raise between NZ$5 billion and NZ$7 billion.
Finance Minister Bill English says the all up costs to the taxpayer, for all the Government's suppliers and contractors across the sell-down programme, are expected to be around 2% of total proceeds, which he says is low by market standards.
Treasury says applicants to be the retail banking service provider must confirm their ability to provide the services ordinarily required of a retail banker for a fully marketed domestic and global offer of securities for each public offer.
This will include advising Treasury, and Treasury’s service providers, on matters associated with collecting and processing payments in relation to retail investor applications for shares in the offers, and working closely with all relevant Crown agencies involved in the so-called Mixed Ownership Model, including the Treasury, the float joint lead managers, legal advisors and other service providers.
Treasury says applicants must indicate whether they can provide services for online applicants living in Australia, establish a payment facility for payment from Australian brokers, and hold funds in the Australian dollar in an interest-bearing trust account on behalf of the Crown, should Treasury require these services.
Earlier this month Treasury issued a request for proposal for a probity adviser and already has a smorgasbord of other advisers in place including investment banks as joint lead managers, law firms as legal advisers, Deutsche Bank and its 49% owned Craigs Investment Partners as Crown Adviser, Lazard as Independent Adviser, public relations firm Senate Communications, advertising firm Clemenger Group, Chris Major as marketing and communications director, and Computershare Investor Services to provide online services and infrastructure (including websites), transaction services and infrastructure including processing of applications for shares, mail house services, call centre services. In addition Treasury has named UMR as market research consultant. See more on the array of advisers here.
Still to come are a printer, and co-lead managers for the Mighty River Power initial public offering (IPO) and subsequent IPOs. Treasury will pick legal advisers for subsequent IPOs from its panel of law firms chosen as preferred suppliers of their services for the floats. Aside from Bell Gully which has won the role for the Mighty River Power IPO, the panel also includes Chapman Tripp, Russell McVeagh and Simpson Grierson.
And it will also select joint lead managers for IPOs to follow the Mighty River Power one from its panel that includes Mighty River Power joint lead managers First NZ Capital and Credit Suisse Australia, Macquarie Capital, and Goldman Sachs, plus UBS, a partnership between Forsyth Barr and Merrill Lynch, Deutsche Bank and Craigs Investment Partners.
Treasury says applications for those seeking the retail bank role must be in my midday on June 13. It'll then release its short list on June 19, start negotiations with preferred respondents on July 2, and aims to have a contract in place from July 9.
(Update adds detail on advisers still to be named).