The Bahrain-based Arab Banking Corporation (ABC) has hired Deutsche Bank to sell all or as much as possible of its controlling 67.2 percent stake in Spain’s Banco Atlantico. This move is believed to follow the recent acquisition of Spain’s eighth largest bank, Banco Zaragozano, by Barclays Bank for €1.14 billion ($1.29 billion), an amount three times its book value.
ABC is understood to have been encouraged to offload its shares in Banco Atlantico with the aim of obtaining the high valuation achieved by Banco Zaragozano. The list of banks touted as potential buyers for Banco Atlantico, includes Banco Popular and Banco Sabadell, both medium sized Spanish banks, as well as foreign giants such as Barclays and Deutsche Bank.
Successful bids by either Barclays or Deutsche Bank would help to significantly increase their presence in one of the fastest growing financial services markets in Europe. — (menareport.com)
© 2003 Mena Report (www.menareport.com )