RETAIL BANKING | Cesar Tordesillas, Malaysia

RHB may eye merger with AMMB

RHB Capital Bhd may revisit a potential merger with AMMB Holdings Bhd after failed deals with CIMB and Maybank.

OSK Research said RHB Cap would benefit from Australia & New Zealand Banking Group's strong credit scoring processes as reflected in AMMB's lower gross impaired loans ratio of 3.4 per cent and would propel AMMB from being the sixth largest bank to the fourth largest in Malaysia.

"Also there will be more balanced loan portfolio, with RHB Cap's higher floating rate loans complementing AMMB's higher fixed rate loans," it said.

It said, however, the entry of Aabar Investment had complicated matters in terms of shareholding control.

"Previously, market talk was of Abu Dhabi Commercial Bank selling its 24.9 per cent stake to ANZ.

"This would have enabled ANZ to maintain its shareholding in the merged entity above the 20 per cent level, while the Employees Provident Fund would have gradually pared down its stake and left ANZ as the dominant controlling shareholder," it said.

OSK said ADCB sold its RHB Cap shares to Aabar instead and this meant that any merger between RHB Cap and AMMB would result in ANZ's stake in the merged entity being diluted to below 20 per cent.

The full story is available at bernama.

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