Qatar Holding to invest in Santander Brazil

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The eurozone's largest bank, Spain's Santander, said Monday that Qatar Holding had agreed to invest 2.73 billion dollars (1.95 billion euros) in its Brazilian subsidiary.

The Gulf state's investment arm will buy bonds equivalent to 5.0-percent of Banco Santander Brazil, which must be converted into shares after three years, Santander said in a statement to Spain's stock market regulator.

The exchange price of the bonds will be 23.75 reals (14.23 dollars) per share and will pay an annual coupon of 6.75 percent in dollars.

"This investment envisages the incorporation of Qatar Holding as a strategic partner of Grupo Santander in Brazil and throughout Latin America," it said.

The deal will allow Banco Santander Brazil "to pursue its commitment to achieve a free float of 25 percent on the stock market by the end of 2014," the bank said.

Qatar Holding is the investment arm of Qatar's sovereign wealth fund. It has big stakes in Credit Suisse and Britain's Barclays bank.

© 2010 AFP

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