Corporate Financier’s Notes by Aivars Jurcans
Done! And Done
Owl Rock Capital Group and Dyal Capital Partners, both asset managers, have agreed to merge and go public through Altimar Acquisition Corp, a blank cheque company. Blue Owl Capital, the combined company, is expected to be valued at about USD 12.5 billion and will manage over USD 45 billion in assets.
Metro Bank, a UK lender, has agreed to sell GBP 3 billion of mortgages, or about 20% of its loan book, to NatWest, a larger rival.
Bahrain-based Investcorp has agreed to sell its indirect stake in Banque Paris Bertrand to Rothschild & Co. Based in Switzerland, Banque Paris Bertrand had USD 7.36 billion in client assets in November 2020.
Wahed, a US-based Islamic-finance fintech backed by Saudi Aramco, has agreed to acquire Niyah, a UK digital banking app designed for the Muslim community. The financial terms of the deal were not disclosed.
Wells Fargo has agreed to sell its USD 10 billion private student loan book to a group including Apollo Global Management and Blackstone Group.
Sepah Bank, a state-run Iranian lender, has agreed to take over Ansar Bank, Mehr Eqtesad Bank, Hekmat Bank, Ghavamin Bank and Kosar Credit Institution. All the lenders are said to have major links to the military.
GoPay, a payments and financial arm of Gojek (an Indonesian internet group), has paid about USD 160 million to increase its stake in PT Bank Jago from 4.14% to 22.16%.
Finalblr, a payments company, has agreed to sell its entire business and operations to an Israeli-United Arab Emirates consortium comprising Global Fintech Investments Holding (an affiliate of Prism Group) and Royal Strategic Partners, for a nominal USD 1 after running into financial difficulties.
Deals On The Table
Aviva and UniCredit are said to be expecting non-binding bids for their insurance JV which could be worth around EUR 600 million. UniCredit is said to be planning to sell its 49% along with Aviva which is moving to divest its Italian operations.
Coinbase, a US cryptocurrency exchange, is said to have filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission to go public. It was valued at more than USD 8 billion in 2018 after a USD 300 million funding round.
Thanks, But No Deal
The Co-operative Bank, a UK lender, has called off sale discussions with Cerberus, a US private equity group, without giving a reason.
Nordea, a Helsinki-based Nordic lender, has said its decision to focus on the Nordics and to “de-risk” the bank entails the “closure and liquidation of Nordea Bank Russia”. At the end of 2019, Nordea had about EUR 500 million in corporate loans and about 140 employees in Russia.
GoCardless, a UK digital payments firm, has raised USD 95 million in an investment round led by Bain Capital Ventures. The company processes USD 18 billion in payments annually across more than 30 countries.
Buyout groups struck deals worth USD 559 billion worldwide in 2020, rising almost a 1/5th from 2019, according to figures from Refinitiv covering January 1 to December 22. More than 8,000 deals were announced this year, the most since records began in 1980.
A Thought Worth Noting
“European banking M&A is red hot. The tone and nature of discussions between potential merger counter-parties has evolved from what they were four years ago – synergies and post-merger integration are front of mind. This approach very much points toward the seriousness of discussions.”
Hyder Jumabhoy, partner, financial services M&A, White & Case
The next issue of Banking M&A Digest will be released on 7 January 2021.
Happy Holidays and warm wishes for the New Year!