CaixaBank to buy Spain’s Barclays retail banking
Spain’s CaixaBank has agreed to buy Barclays Bank’ retail bank division in Spain for a total value of €800m. The final price will depend on Barclays Spain’s total assets at the end of the year, CaixaBank said.
In a press release issued by CaixaBank that Barclays Spanish units had €22.2bn in assets and €20.5bn in liabilities as of the end of June.
The sale, which is subject to regulatory approval, will be concluded by the end of the year and does not include Barclays investment bank and Barcalycard. Barcalys Bank PLC will continue to operate that part of the business, CaixaBank said.
Thanks to the acquisition CaixaBank, the third Spanish bank per AUM, will gain some 550,000 new clients mainly from Barclays’ retail banking, private and personal banking, as well as a network of 270 bank branches and about 2,400 employees.
Isidro Fainé, president of CaixaBank, said that the acquisition will bring to the bank a “highly qualified, professional team” which will boost CaixaBank’s services quality.
From his part, Antony Jenkins, CEO of the Barlcays Group announced that they will look at updating the group’s strategy next year and added that the retail business in Spain was not a priority and will have a better chance of growing under the lead of CaixaBank.
The acquisition reflects the difficulty of foreign players to gain space in the Spanish retail banking sector, which is historically dominated by local groups like Santander, BBVA and CaixaBank. Prior to this, Lloyds Group sold its retail business to Banco Sabadell and Banco Popular Espanol bought Citigroup’s retail banking and credit card business.