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Commerzbank and Deutsche Bank could join forces via merger: Der Spiegel
Posted on Wednesday, 12 September 2018 11:53
German banking giants Deutsche Bank and Commerzbank could merge after a Der Spiegel report suggested that the pair are increasingly open to the idea. The German weekly news magazine cited one person in the know as saying that Commerzbank chief executive Martin Zielke is in favour of the proposed combination, noting that German Minister of Finance Olaf Scholz is also on board. However, it added that Deutsche Bank chief Christian Sewing does not believe a merger is likely to occur within the next 18 months. The German Finance Ministry has not confirmed its stance on the proposed deal, with a spokeswoman telling Reuters that the body does not comment on the strategic decisions of banks. This is not the first time the two parties have been linked; in November 2015, reports suggested that Commerzbank could become a takeover target. A Handelsblatt article from August 2016 subsequently said the company had been in talks with Deutsche Bank over a potential combination, but no further details have been disclosed since then. There have already been 183 deals involving a commercial banking services provider as both the buyer and target announced worldwide during 2018, according to Zephyr, the M&A database published by Bureau van Dijk. Of these, the largest took place in May, when Barclays agreed to acquire the Irish mortgages portfolio of Lloyds Banking Group for USD 5.41 billion. This was followed by a USD 4.70 billion takeover of US-based MB Financial by Fifth Third Bancorp. Commerzbank describes itself as a leading international commercial bank and serves corporate, private and small business clients. The firm also owns two online subsidiaries – comdirect and mBank – and has branches and offices in nearly 50 countries. Deutsche Bank claims to be one of the leading financial services providers in the world, with a presence throughout Europe, North and South America and Asia-Pacific. © Zephus Ltd