by Andrew Johnson
April 6, 2012

from Express Website








The Rothschild banking dynasty

is merging its French and UK arms

to keep the family's grip on the business

in the face of new financial rules.

Rothschild's main holding company, Paris Orleans, will issue new shares and swap them for minority stakes in its French and British subsidiaries.

The resulting elimination of separate minority shareholders in businesses like London-based investment bank NM Rothschild & Sons and the elevation of those minority interests to a stake in the holding company will boost regulatory capital under the incoming Basel III regime.

No cash changes hands but Basel III measures give a higher weighting to capital held in such a way.


At the same time Paris Orleans will adopt the takeover-proof French legal status "societe de commandite", a limited-partnership structure that boosts the family's grip and keeps majority voting rights even though it could end up with a smaller stake.

The Rothschilds' banking empire has over the centuries raised funds for world powers and financed massive engineering projects such as the Suez Canal and railways.