Braulio Medel leaves Unicaja after more than 30 years of experience in the entity. A departure from the presidency of the foundation that bears the seal of the almighty Andalusian financier to prevent the report prepared by Baker McKenzie on his governance and honor from prospering. To do this, at point 10 of the board of trustees meeting, the banker’s resignation was voted, although with one condition: he kept the position until the end of the meeting. That is, until it was decided in point 12 if the partial revocation of said analysis of the law firm was requested, a resolution that went ahead with seven votes in favor and five against.
The vote was very close and the employers have shown their discrepancies before the last maneuver of the historic leader of Unicaja. “It is very difficult to understand that he resigns at a certain moment, but that it does not become effective until the end of the meeting to maintain his vote on the paralysis of the report on his suitability,” explain sources familiar with the meeting. A strategy that has served to tie up the decisive vote and request that it not be investigated, as the Protectorate of Banking Foundations, which depends on the Ministry of Economy, had requested.
In this way, Medel’s resignation was deferred with the intention of stopping the investigation. And for now he seems to have succeeded. This maneuver began in mid-April, when he announced his departure. And this Tuesday the last chapter arrived: after accepting his resignation around four in the afternoon, he remained in office for almost two more hours. That is to say, during the votes on the appointment of José Manuel Domínguez Martínez as patron and president (it went ahead unanimously) and on the “unexpected partial loss of the object of the report requested by the Protectorate.”
This last point raised blisters and caused strong discrepancies between the employers related to Medel and the opposite ones. The request made by the Malaga institution is the partial revocation of the requested report and that it be limited only to its governance of the foundation. Now it is the body that depends on the Economy that has to approve the request or maintain the study as it was planned. This is, including the part about Medel’s suitability, something that the Unicaja Foundation considers no longer appropriate after his definitive departure. “The board of trustees has agreed to request the Protectorate’s agreement that the report required by it will rule only on the governance of the foundation, given that the assessment of the suitability of Braulio Medel upon ceasing his post is suddenly meaningless” , explained the Unicaja Foundation in a statement after the meeting.
According to sources present at the meeting, the situation was bizarre. Especially when point 12 was raised, Medel’s dismissal and the election of his replacement had already been decided, but the former was still present at the meeting with voice and vote. With the arrival of this matter, due to a conflict of interest, Medel had to leave the debate. But he was able to return for the vote, which was very close and where all the differences were shown. He came out ahead with seven votes in favor and five against (José Antonio Fernández García, Pedro Fernández Céspedes, Patricia Cid González, Juan de Dios del Pino Cabello and Antonio Pascual Acosta). “If Medel had not remained as president in the vote, it is very likely that the request for the partial revocation of the report would not have gone ahead,” these sources maintain.
New financial plan
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In this context, the ball remains in the Economy court, through the Protectorate, which has to clarify if it accepts to limit the investigation after the resignation of the one who was patron and president. According to sources close to the foundation, Medel’s interest in avoiding this analysis is due to several reasons: his personal pride, so that he is not investigated and, furthermore, to be able to hold paid positions in institutions dependent on the Unicaja Foundation without being patron. “If an unfavorable report comes out, it would be very difficult to be in those positions,” sources from the board of trustees justify.
During the urgently called meeting, the latest setback that Medel leaves has also been discussed. The Bank of Spain has given the foundation a period of two months to resolve the deficiencies detected in its financial plan. “The changes have to be made. The plan is going to be remade in these two months ”, settle the same sources. The letter, as advanced The confidential, focuses on Medel’s unilateral decision to invest 27 million euros from the foundation in preferred shares of Unicaja Banco at the end of last year. The historic leader of Unicaja has justified it because it was the money that had remained unassigned in 2021 and that could be carried out by the most urgent route without calling a meeting. The value of these bonds, according to Bloomberghas fallen in these months to 24 million.
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