2016 saw one of the largest and most complex events ever in the UK market – the acquisition of BG Group by Royal Dutch Shell. Equiniti worked in partnership with the two companies to successfully deliver the transaction, drawing on combined corporate relationships that spanned nearly 75 years.
The process was underpinned by our Sirius platform. In the space of just six weeks, we designed, built, tested and deployed new processes and utilities, specifically to support the task. The project required more than 13,000 hours worked and over 200 conference calls and meetings. Seventy specially trained agents handled nearly 50,000 calls from shareholders, including 9,000 on the first day after the settlement mailing. We processed 106,000 forms with 100% accuracy and despatched more than 500,000 cheques.
On the day the transaction completed, we received £13bn and successfully settled across more than 10,000 Crest participants in just three hours.
These transactions demonstrate our ability to support our clients, however complex their requirements. This was not our only ground-breaking transaction in 2016. In October, we completed the largest corporate action Crest payment in UK history, successfully settling an incredible £39bn as AB InBev acquired SABMiller. This was the culmination of 1,300 hours of work and more than four months of support to our client. This followed another successful major transaction, which saw us handle payments of nearly £24bn in September for Softbank’s purchase of ARM Holdings.
These transactions demonstrate our ability to support our clients, however complex their requirements. Our market-leading technology, coupled with our dedicated and specialist people, is a truly compelling combination.