Geely Holding Receives Approval to Become Majority Owner of Saxo Bank

Geely and Sampo will acquire a 52 percent and 19.9 percent stake in the broker, respectively.

Saxo Bank, a multi-asset broker, announced on Friday that it has received all of the regulatory approvals to enable China’s Zhejiang Geely Holding Group Co. Ltd (Geely) and Finland’s Sampo plc (Sampo) to acquire shares in Saxo Bank A/S.

Back in October last year, Geely made an offer to buy a majority stake in the Danish multi-asset brokerage. At the same time, Sampo also made a bid to take up a 19.9 percent stake of the Bank. Until now, both deals were awaiting regulatory approval from 11 separate financial and competition authorities. Earlier this year, Finance Magnates reported that the deal received approval from the Danish FSA (Financial Supervisory Authority).

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Now, the closing of the deal will see TPG Capital (29.26 percent), Lars Seier Christensen (25.71 percent) and SinarMas (9.9 percent) sell their interests in Saxo Bank. According to the statement from Saxo Bank, some minority shareholders have also agreed to sell their shares to Geely.

All up, Geely will hold a 52 percent stake in the broker and Sampo will have a 19.9 percent interest. As reported back in April of 2018, the CEO and Founder of Saxo Bank, Kim Fournais will retain his share of 25.71 percent. Altogether, the transaction values Saxo Bank at 1.325 billion ($1.550 billion).

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Saxo Bank Reshuffles Its Board of Directors

With the regulatory approvals now received, Saxo Bank has reshuffled its Board of Directors to reflect the new ownership structure. At its extraordinary general meeting on September 13, 2018, Daniel Donghui Li, the CFO and Executive VP of Geely was elected as chairman, and Henrik Normann was appointed to Vice-chairman.

Saxo Bank CEO Kim Fournais
Kim Fournais

Commenting on the closure of the deal, Fournais, said: “Today, we proudly welcome Geely and Sampo as shareholders. It is an important milestone for Saxo Bank and for me personally as CEO, founder and shareholder. The track-records of both Geely and Sampo are unparalleled and I am confident that the new ownership structure will provide us with the right foundation to deliver long term growth.”

“With Geely as a shareholder, we will benefit from a strong position in growth markets in the Asia region, with Greater China at its core.  At the same time Sampo, as the leading blue-chip investor in the Nordic financial industry, further strengthens our Nordic foundation.”

Donghui Li from Geely added: “We believe that Saxo Bank’s technologies and products can be effectively expanded across Asia, where we hope to build on its strong reputation in global financial and regulatory technology. This is expected to generate synergies from the development of financial services in the Chinese market.”

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