EUROPE - The merger of the Austrian real estate companies Immofinanz and Immoeast has been approved by the shareholder meetings but  the new joint Immofinanz is unlikely to replace Immoeast on the Warsaw stock exchange.

Board officials noted in papers on its shareholders meetings that a listing had been considered but was found to be impractical for legal and economic reasons.

Ahead of the meetings, Immoeast's main Polish shareholder, the PTE PZU pension fund, had raised concerns about the new company not listing in Poland as it could mean Polish institutional investors would be forced to divest at least partly from Immofinanz once they have traded their two Immoeast shares for three Immofinanz shares.

Polish pension funds are only allowed to hold 5% of their equities in overseas listed stocks so would have to incorporate the new holding within that or sell them.

The merger was presented at the end of last year to remove conflicts of interest between Immofinanz and its subsidiary, Immoeast, as well as to reduce costs and increase the liquidity of Immofinanz shares.