World’s richest man to hold stake in new Spanish bankMay 12th, 2011 - 12:14 pm ICT by IANS
Barcelona, May 12 (IANS/EFE) Mexico’s Carlos Slim, the world’s richest man, will hold a one percent stake in CaixaBank, once the La Caixa savings bank transfers its banking business to that new listed financial group that will be among Spain’s four largest.
Spanish dailies La Vanguardia and El Pais published that information Wednesday.
Slim, whose net worth is estimated at $51 billion, is a strategic partner of La Caixa since they jointly control Mexican financial and insurance group Inbursa GF, the newspapers said.
The Mexican magnate has already begun purchasing shares in La Caixa’s listed investment holding company, Criteria, whose assets include foreign financial institutions, and that stake is expected to climb to one percent.
As part of a complicated transaction, La Caixa’s banking business is to be transferred to Criteria, which is then to be restructured and renamed CaixaBank in August.
The creation of the new bank is part of a restructuring of Spain’s unlisted savings banks, or cajas, which are linked to the regional governments and were battered by the collapse of Spain’s real estate market.
Spain’s government wants the “cajas” to reorganise and raise more private capital to ease international financial institutions’ concerns about their financial health and restore the flow of credit in Spain.
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