The Dutch Investors Association said Fortis knowingly misled shareholders over solvency

The Dutch Investors Association (VEB) has asked financial regulators to look into whether Fortis misled its shareholders over solvency concerns.

The request into possible enforcement action is aimed at former chief executive Jean-Paul Votron, who lost his job over the weekend.

Fortis announced on the June 26 a number of emergency measures to reinforce its solvency. Shareholders said these measures came as a surprise. In an interview with the VEB magazine on April 26, Votron said the balance sheet was ‘absolutely in order’.

The VEB said it is unlikely that the governing board members of Fortis did not know the severity of the situation and that solvency had to be improved. Spreading knowingly false information forms a breach of supervisory legislation.