Banc Sabadell decides to move its headquarters out of Catalonia

Spanish government preparing new law to facilitate relocation of companies and banks outside of Catalonia

Banc Sabadell's headquarters in Barcelona (by ACN)
Banc Sabadell's headquarters in Barcelona (by ACN) / ACN

ACN | Barcelona

October 5, 2017 08:05 PM

The second biggest Catalan bank, Banc Sabadell, is moving its headquarters out of Catalonia. The decision, taken on Thursday, comes amid Spanish and Catalan authorities' tensions on independence. Banc Sabadell sources said the move won't affect its offices or employees, but responds to fears of losing ECB liquidity in case of independence, especially in case Catalonia were to be expelled from the EU.

Banc Sabadell has decided to move the legal headquarters to the town of Alacant, in the region of Valencia. Markets have responded positively to the bank decision, with stocks up by more than 6%. The biggest Catalan bank, Caixabank, is also weighting up the possibility of moving its legal headquarters outside of Barcelona, while one of the biggest insurance companies, Catalana Occident, said in an internal memo that it will do whatever is necessary to guarantee the continuity of its activities.

Amid all the nerves among some Catalan companies about the possibility of a declaration of independence, the Spanish government is preparing a new law to make it easier for companies to relocate outside Catalonia. According to a report published by Reuters and confirmed by ACN, the Mariano Rajoy executive is studying a new decree that would allow companies to change their legal status more quickly with a board meeting and without permission from stakeholders.