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The Honolulu Advertiser
Posted on: Wednesday, May 21, 2003

Bank drops move to halt vote

Advertiser Staff

Central Pacific Bank withdrew its request for a court order aimed at stopping next week's scheduled meeting when City Bank stockholders will vote on its hostile takeover bid.

In a statement last night, Central Pacific renewed its appeal to City Bank shareholders to boycott next Wednesday's meeting. Central Pacific said shareholders should wait for an announcement of a later meeting.

"We decided to withdraw our complaint today because it has become an unnecessary distraction from the principal issue —what do shareholders want?" Central Pacific said, indicating it is confident it "will receive the approvals" being sought "to ensure shareholders' wishes are listened to and met."

A City Bank spokesman could not be reached for comment last night.

Withdrawal of Central Pacific's motion for a preliminary injunction halting next Wednesday's meeting is the latest aspect of the skirmish between the two financial institutions. A court hearing set for tomorrow on the motion will likely be canceled as a result.

City Bank is resisting Central Pacific's unsolicited offer to merge the banks, saying it will lead to layoffs and closing of branches. Central Pacific says the merger would create a stronger institution that could better compete against the larger banks.

Central Pacific opposed the meeting set for next Wednesday, arguing that it would not give shareholders enough time to consider the issues.

In another development yesterday, a New York investment bank has retracted a favorable financial analysis of Central Pacific Bank's hostile takeover bid for CB Bancshares, saying its findings were based on unreliable numbers.

Keefe Bruyette & Woods Inc. apologized for the analysis released last week, which said CB Bancshares would need five years of strong growth to generate the value to shareholders promised by Central Pacific's merger.