China’s Geely to take control of Denmark’s Saxo Bank

Chinese carmaker Geely Group is increasing its stake in Saxo Bank to more than 50 per cent, with Nordic financial services company Sampo Group also backing the Danish business.

Geely, which announced plans to take a 30 per cent stake in Saxo Bank as part of a ‘diversification drive’ back in May, will increase its stake and become majority shareholder with a total of 51.5 per cent.

The company is looking to increase its stake by 21.5 per cent, at a cost of $300m according to the New York Times. However, Saxo and Geey haven’t disclosed financial details of the deal.

Nordic financial services company Sampo will also buy a 19.9 per cent stake in the startup for €265m. Current Saxo Bank shareholders TPG Capital and SinarMas have accepted the offers from Geely and Sampo, and will sell their stakes, Saxo said.

However, Saxo’s chief executive Kim Fournais, who founded the company with Lars Seier Christensen and Marc Hauschildt in 1992, will keep his 25.71 per cent stake following the deal.

Saxo Bank is a multi-asset trading and investment specialist, offering services relating to trading and investment technologies.

The deal, which is still awaiting regulatory approval, is the first investment into financial services for Geely, highlighting Chinese companies’ rising interest in European financial firms.

With Beijing encouraging Chinese companies to invest in ‘high and new technologies’, it comes as no surprise to see a rise in interest in the European FinTech sector.

Earlier this year, Chinese Internet giant Tencent Holdings led a $145.5m Series C round financing in Futu Securities, an online brokerage platform serving Chinese investors trading US and Hong Kong-listed stocks.

Copyright © 2017 FinTech Global

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