ABN in EUR 6.3bn Italian bank takeover bid

30th March 2005, Comments 0 comments

30 March 2005, AMSTERDAM — Dutch bank ABN Amro has made a EUR 6.3 billion takeover offer for Italian bank Antonveneta, aiming to increase its 13 percent stake to full ownership.

30 March 2005

AMSTERDAM — Dutch bank ABN Amro has made a EUR 6.3 billion takeover offer for Italian bank Antonveneta, aiming to increase its 13 percent stake to full ownership.

The offer equates to EUR 25 per share and to finance the deal — which will go ahead on 15 April pending the approval of competition authorities — ABN will issue a maximum of 135 million shares.

The bank expects that the takeover will become profitable in about a year's time, news service NOS reported on Wednesday.

If the takeover does not proceed, ABN said it would repay the proceeds of the share offer — estimated at EUR 3 billion — back to shareholders.

ABN chief Rijkman Groenink said Italy represents a large and attractive market for growth. Antonveneta has 1.3 million customers, primarily in the wealthy north-east of the country.

The takeover offer is exceptional because Italian banks rarely come into the hands of foreign companies. Antonveneta is the seventh largest bank in Italy, making a net profit of EUR 283 million last year compared with a loss of EUR 843 million in 2003.

ABN reported in February a 17.3 percent rise in net profit to EUR 3.7 billion last year. But it failed to achieve its target of securing a ranking among the top five banks in Europe.

Groenink said the bank — which cut 2,850 jobs last year and sold about USD 4 billion in assets — had been too ambitious. But he said the bank will meet its target in its next four-year cycle.

[Copyright Expatica News 2005]

Subject: Dutch news

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