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BPI-Robinsons Bank merger gets clearance from PCC

BPI Robinsons Bank merger


The Philippine Competition Commission has cleared the proposed merger of the Bank of the Philippine Islands and Robinsons Bank Corp.

According to a disclosure BPI filed with the Philippine Stock Exchange, the PCC on September 13 released to BPI the signed decision clearing the merger.

“Upon careful review of the findings and recommendation of the Mergers and Acquisitions Office (MAO) and the parties' submissions, the Commission finds that the Transaction will not likely result in substantial lessening of competition for reasons discussed below,” the PCC said in its decision.

The antitrust body further said that although BPI is one of the largest banks in the country, “its post-transaction market share is insufficient to substantially lessen market competition.”

“The presence of the remaining market players, including bigger banks, pose sufficient competitive pressure on the surviving entity,” the PCC said.

The merger still needs to be cleared by the Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas and the Securities and Exchange Commission.

BPI's shareholders in January approved the merger between the two banks with BPI as the surviving entity.

“The proposed merger with Robinsons Bank Corporation will unlock various synergies across several products and service platforms and expand the customer and deposit base of both banks,” BPI president and CEO Jose Teodoro Limcaoco said then.

“Apart from growing BPI’s client and deposit base, and expanding synergies, the merger will increase shareholder value by providing BPI opportunities to collaborate across the Gokongwei Group’s ecosystem, which includes market leading businesses in food manufacturing, air transportation, real estate and property development, and multi-format retail companies,” he added.

The BPI chief added that the  merger will also expand BPI’s access to the Gokongwei network, especially to the Filipino-Chinese market segment, “which has been the significant advantage of our closest competitors.” —NB, GMA Integrated News