Saturday, December 9

Japan’s SMFG plans to take 10% stake in SBI -Nikkei

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TOKYO — Japan’s Sumitomo Mitsui Financial Group (SMFG) is in final talks to take a 10% stake in financial group SBI Holdings, the Nikkei business daily reported on Tuesday, in a deal likely to be worth more than 60 billion yen ($443 million) .

The deal, which aims to reinforce their securities businesses domestically, will see SBI issue new shares, Nikkei reported, adding that SBI may also take a small stake in SMFG.

The partnership could see SMFG introduce SBI’s online securities business to its retail banking customer base.

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The two have already teamed up to create a digital stock exchange to provide a trading platform alternative to the Tokyo Stock Exchange.

SMFG, Japan’s second-largest lender by assets, has its own brokerage unit, SMBC Nikko Securities Inc, which has been under investigation following the arrest of some of its executives over alleged market manipulation. SMBC Nikko said it was conducting its own investigation into the matter.

SMFG was not immediately available for comment.

SBI is aiming to become Japan’s fourth-largest banking group after Mitsubishi UFJ Financial Group, Sumitomo Mitsui and Mizuho Financial Group. It already owns the country’s largest online brokerage, an online bank and an asset manager.

Hoping to create a nationwide network, it has been taking stakes in Japanese regional lenders and raised its stake in midsize lender Shinsei Bank to 48% through a $1 billion tender offer last year. ($1 = 135.3300 yen) (Reporting by Sam Nussey and Makiko Yamazaki Editing by David Goodman, Andrew Heavens and Louise Heavens)