Ibercaja + Caja 3: first merger of Spanish cajas after De Guindo’s reform

kajsBy Tania Suárez | The board of directors of Ibercaja and Caja 3 have agreed to initiate the merger process of their banking business, in order to develop a new bank. Last February the Spanish minister of Economy Luis de Guindos announced the outline of the financial reform. It has shaken the system and the public opinion, but it is now starting to reap the fruits. As the economist Juan Pedro Marín Arrese said, the real aim of Spain’s financial reform is to force cajas mergers.

Experts at Sabadell explain that the merged entity will have €65 billion in assets, 1,622 bank offices and a 10.22% of core capital (Tier 1) without public aid. At Banesto, analysts estimate a banking business volume of €104 billion, and explain that the new bank will reach the position number 13 in the Spanish financial sector ranking, between BMN and Bankinter. The experts from Ahorro Corporación (ACF) say Ibercaja will hold the 80% of the new bank, and Caja 3 the remaining 20%.

This agreement with Caja 3 will leave Ibercaja at a disadvantage regarding the Unnim auction. According to most analysts, Ibercaja is unable to take over both, so it’s likely that Banco Pastor will finally bid for Unnim.

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The Corner
The Corner has a team of on-the-ground reporters in capital cities ranging from New York to Beijing. Their stories are edited by the teams at the Spanish magazine Consejeros (for members of companies’ boards of directors) and at the stock market news site Consenso Del Mercado (market consensus). They have worked in economics and communication for over 25 years.

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