Kolkata-based Bandhan Bank will buy housing financier Gruh Finance in a share-swap deal, the companies said on Monday. The merger is subject to approval from the Reserve Bank of India (RBI), Sebi as well as the shareholders.
Shareholders of Gruh Finance will get 568 shares of Bandhan Bank for every 1,000 shares held. The effective date of the merger shall be January 1, 2019, subject to regulatory approvals.
CNBC-TV18 was the first to report the talks between Bandhan Bank and Gruh Finance on the merger.
Gruh Finance, owned by HDFC Ltd, has total assests of Rs 15,970.97 crore with turnover of Rs 1,687.19 crore and net worth of Rs. 1,380.92 crore as on March 31, 2018.
Bandhan Bank has total assets of Rs 44,310.06 crore, turnover of Rs 5,508.48 crore (includes other income) and net worth of Rs 9,382 crore, as on March 31, 2018.
Reportedly, HDFC may hold 15.58 percent in the combined entity against 57.83 percent stake Gruh Finance. Post-merger, Bandhan’s promoter holding will come down to 60.12 percent against 82.28 percent currently.
“GRUH has a strong pedigree and is one of the best housing finance companies in India. This merger would bring together two companies and teams that have a common mission of serving the under-banked population of the country," said Chandra Shekhar Ghosh, MD and CEO, Bandhan Bank.
GRUH’s strong presence in the west, combined with Bandhan Bank’s deep penetration in the east and north-eastern regions of the country will enable the combined entity to better serve the financial needs of under-banked and rural customers, said Sudhin Choksey, MD and CEO of GRUH.
“Bandhan Bank and GRUH have similar core values, business ethics and are committed to financial inclusion. This merger will create one of the largest rural and semi-urban lending platforms in India," said Deepak Parekh, chairman, HDFC Limited.
Last year, RBI had imposed restrictions on Bandhan Bank's branch expansion after it failed to pare promoters' stake to 40 percent from close to 82 percent, within the stipulated three-year time frame.
As per RBI shareholding norms, every bank or any firm which directly owns stake in a bank, whether it is listed or unlisted, has to reduce stake gradually to 10 percent.Shares of Bandhan Bank closed down 5.8 percent at Rs 498.05 on Monday, on media reports of a deal, which was announced after the market close. Gruh Finance shares ended 4.1 percent lower at Rs 306.35.