ING Groep, the biggest Dutch bank, has a market value of almost EUR 47 billion ($53 billion), almost five times Commerzbank’s EUR 10 billion.
Wednesday 17, April 2019
(Bloomberg) --ING Groep is considering buying Commerzbank, as the German lender’s talks with domestic rival Deutsche Bank draw increasing criticism.
ING Chief Executive Officer Ralph Hamers has reached out to both the German government and his Commerzbank counterpart, Martin Zielke, in an effort to start discussions.
Hamers has pledged to cut fewer jobs than a Commerzbank-Deutsche Bank deal would require, he also offered to move ING’s headquarters to Frankfurt from Amsterdam.
A combination of the two German lenders could lead to the elimination of as many as 30,000 jobs, and the potential for such a deal has prompted fierce opposition from labour unions.
Commerzbank, still partly owned by the government after a bailout, is attracting renewed interest from potential acquirers as the talks with Deutsche Bank run into mounting obstacles.
Banks including BNP Paribas and UniCredit have expressed their interest to the government in the past. Italy’s UniCredit is said to be preparing a takeover bid should a Deutsche Bank deal fall through.