CEO of Nasdaq Tallinn stock exchange Kaarel Ots said that Tallink and LHV have not violated market rules or harmed the interests of shareholders by disclosing the details of the loan offer the bank made to the shipping company.
"As concerns stock exchange rules, the most important thing is to make sure shareholders are informed. It can be said today that shareholders are perhaps even better informed than they would be under normal circumstances," Ots told ERR.
"Half-jokingly speaking, it is very good to be either company's shareholder today. Both companies – LHV and Tallink – are keen to make their shareholders money," he added.
"Such practices are commonplace. Both companies are tying to exit the crisis and grow. I see nothing alarming for shareholders," Ots said.
Head of the Estonian Financial Supervision Authority Kilvar Kessler also spoke out on the subject on social media.
"Words have power and a public squabble between listed companies has an effect on their value. It is time to put this thing to bed, to avoid half statements that test the limits of market manipulation," Kessler wrote.
Kessler emphasized that the stock exchange is a subject of financial supervision, just like listed companies and banking groups.
Ots said in his comment that the words of executive officers undoubtedly carry weight. "But I believe, as Kilvar Kessler said, that it is testing the limits. I do not feel anyone has crossed those lines today. Rather, it is balancing on the border of good taste."
LHV Varahaldus disclosed on Thursday that it made a €200 million financing offer to Tallink in cooperation with private equity firm Novalpina Capital. Tallink rejected the offer and published details about it, saying it was not in the interests of its shareholders.
Editor: Marcus Turovski