Isn't this the tactic here. I mean they are only authorized to have 2.5 billion shares (now 166 million). So they have 145 million possibly to sell. The bidder can bid as low as $3.45 and FBP would have to accept under pressure from FDIC and Treasury.
So perhaps the powers in charge made this a precondition to reverse split so that new investores are not left holding a penny stock even if for only a few days or weeks.