Banking M&A Digest #56 (9.1.2020)

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Corporate Financier’s Notes  

by Aivars Jurcans

Done! And Done

Mubadala, an Abu Dhabi sovereign wealth fund, has reduced its stake in UniCredit, an Italian bank, from 4.99% to 2.02%. The stake sold is being valued at about EUR 850 million. 

Source: Bloomberg

Commerzbank, a German lender, has acquired “a block of shares” in Comdirect, an online bank, from Petrus Advisers that pushes its ownership to over 90%.

Source: Reuters

The European Bank for Reconstruction and Development has sold its 10% stake in Borsa Istanbul to the Turkish Wealth Fund. TWF has increased its stake in the stock exchange to 90.6% as a result of the deal.

Source: Reuters

Monte dei Paschi di Siena, an Italian state-owned lender, has completed 3 disposals of impaired loans for around EUR 1.8 billion. This has cut the soured loans on its balance sheet to around 12.5% of total lending.

Source: Reuters

Intesa Sanpaolo, an Italian lender, has agreed to buy “a controlling stake” in RBM, a family-owned health insurer, for EUR 300 million. RBM is the 3rd largest health insurer in Italy.

Source: Reuters

Intesa Sanpaolo, an Italian lender, has agreed to sell its retailers’ payment business (comprising 380,000 retail outlets) to Nexi, a payments group, in a EUR 1 billion deal that gives Intesa a 10% stake in Nexi.

Source: Reuters

Eurobank, a Greek lender, has agreed to sell an 80% stake in FPS, its loan servicing unit, to doValue, the Italy’s biggest loan recovery firm, in a deal valued at about EUR 300 million.

Source: Reuters

Deals On The Table

Anbang Insurance Group, controlled by the Chinese government, is said to be offering its 35% stake in Chengdu Rural Commercial Bank for sale for USD 2.4 billion. 

Source: Reuters

The Russian government is said to be planning to use the country’s National Wealth Fund to buy the central bank’s stake in Sberbank, Russia’s largest lender. The central bank currently owns 50% plus 1 share in Sberbank which has a market capitalisation of USD 45.45 billion.

Source: Reuters

Nova Ljubljanska Banka, Slovenia’s largest lender, is said to have placed the best bid in the sale of Komercijalna Banka, Serbia’s 2nd largest lender. The government currently owns 83.23% of shares in Komercijalna.  

Source: Reuters

La Banque Postale, the banking arm of French mail operator La Poste, is said to be exploring a bid for HSBC France’s retail operations comprising 270 retail branches.

Source: Reuters

Thanks, But No Deal

Apollo Global Management and Varde Partners are said to no longer consider bidding for Altico Capital India, a shadow bank. Both firms have been unwilling to meet creditor demands to inject as much as USD 280 of fresh equity into Altico. 

Source: Bloomberg

Warburg Pincus, BC Partners, Blackstone and Centerbridge are said to have refused to bid for Metro Bank, a UK lender. The costly branch network (about 70 branches across the UK) has been mentioned as a potential reason for that.

Source: FT

Metrics To Watch

Wells Fargo, a US lender, shares are trading at 1.6x times book value (just behind BofA), while its return on equity came in at 9% (compared with 12% a year ago) in Q3.

Source: FT

Itau Unibanco and Banco Bradesco, the 2 Brazilian largest private banks, produce return on equity around 20%, while Banco do Brasil, the state-owned lender, manages 17%. The average price-to-book ratio of Brazil’s banking sector has reached 2.3x times. 

Source: FT

Follow The Money

Atlac Global Investments, an asset management arm of the insurer, has agreed to buy a minority stake in Varagon Capital Partners, a New York-based direct lender. Terms of the deal were not disclosed. Atlac also intends to build a middle-market loan portfolio of up to USD 3 billion over multiple years. 

Source: Bloomberg

BlackRock, a USD asset manager, Temasek Holdings, Singapore state investor, and China Construction Bank have agreed to set up a wealth management JV in China.

Source: Reuters

Up-and-Comers

Monzo, a UK digital bank, is said to be preparing to raise fresh funds of between GBP 50 and GBP 100 million. The bank was valued at just over GBP 2 billion in its last fundraising round in 2019.

Source: FT

Ant Financial, a fintech affiliate of Alibaba Group, is said to have acquired “a sizable stake” in eMonkey, a Vietnamese e-wallet. The size of the deal was not disclosed.

Source: Reuters

On The Baltic Shores

Societe Generale, a French bank, has agreed to sell its Nordics-based SG Finans division to Nordea Bank, a Nordic lender, for EUR 575 million. The price values the SG Finans business at a price-to-book multiple of 1.07x times. SG Finans runs equipment finance and factoring solutions in Norway, Denmark and Sweden.

Source: Reuters

Exciting Numbers

According to Morningstar data, investment in index funds has increased from USD 2.3 trillion 10 years ago to USD 11.4 trillion at the end of November 2019.

Source: FT

According to DZ Bank research, Germans on average put aside 11% of their disposable income in 2019, the same rate as in 2018. The savings ratio of German households is about 2x that of the EU as a whole, according to OECD data.

Source: FT

A Thought Worth Noting

“When I speak with clients they don’t want to be in the hands of American banks and I think that the regulators will not want to have such a concentration of risk. The risk of the world in three, four, five balance sheets? I don’t buy that.”

Frederic Oudea, CEO, Societe Generale

 

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Aivars Jurcans has more than 20 years of corporate finance and investment banking experience. His services are currently available through MURINUS ADVISERS.

Photo by Joe Taylor on Unsplash

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