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HSBC acquisition of Bank of Bermuda approved

Shareholders of the Bank of Bermuda have voted overwhelmingly in favor of the
bank's acquisition by HSBC.

At a Special General Meeting of The Bank of Bermuda Limited ('Bank of
Bermuda') held last week, the resolution to approve the amalgamation of Bank of
Bermuda with a wholly-owned subsidiary of HSBC was duly passed on a poll.

At the meeting, 83.8 per cent of the outstanding shares were voted of which 91.0
per cent voted for the transaction, with 9.0 per cent voting against.

All necessary governmental and regulatory consents and approvals required in
connection with the transaction have been obtained.

The amalgamation, which results in Bank of Bermuda becoming a wholly-owed
subsidiary of HSBC, became effective on 18 February 2004.

HSBC announced on 28 October 2003 (see previous Hedgeweek article) that it
had entered into an agreement to acquire Bank of Bermuda in a transaction
valued at USD 1.3 billion. In addition to providing HSBC with a strong position
and a local banking market in Bermuda, where potential exists for further
expansion, the acquisition will add significant scale and geographical spread to
its existing international fund administration, private banking, trustee and
payments and cash management businesses.

HSBC Group Chairman, Sir John Bond, said: "We are delighted that the
shareholders of Bank of Bermuda have approved the transaction. We believe this
is in the best interests of the customers and shareholders of both companies. We
have always had the greatest respect for Bank of Bermuda and we now look
forward to working with our new colleagues on making the acquisition a

Background Note: With over 9,500 offices in 79 countries and territories, and
assets of USD 983 billion at 30 June 2003, the HSBC Group is one of the world's
largest banking and financial services organisations.

Founded in 1889, Bank of Bermuda is a leading provider of fund administration,
trust, custody, asset management and banking services. It is a global
organisation, with headquarters in Bermuda and a network spanning 16 other
key financial and offshore centres, including Cayman Islands, Cook Islands,
Dublin, Guernsey, Hong Kong, Isle of Man, Jersey, London, Luxembourg, New
York, New Zealand, Singapore, South Africa, Tokyo and Bahrain. Bank of
Bermuda has total assets of USD 12.8 billion (as at 31 December 2003) and over
USD 130 billion in assets under administration.


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