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Leonhard Fischer, chief executive officer of Kleinwort Benson Group and RHJ International

Kleinwort Benson and Deutsche Bank agree deal for proposed acquisition of BHF-BANK

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Kleinwort Benson Group (KBG), the wholly owned subsidiary of financial services group RHJ International (RHJI), has reached agreement with Deutsche Bank to acquire BHF-BANK, a German private bank.

The transaction is subject to regulatory approvals.

Under the transaction, KBG will acquire 100 per cent of BHF-BANK for an agreed consideration of EUR384m, which will be paid in cash and is subject to closing purchase price adjustments.

In addition to funds provided by RHJI, the associated capital increase in KBG is supported by Fosun Group, AQTON SE (the wholly owned strategic investment company of German entrepreneur Stefan Quandt), entities affiliated with Timothy C. Collins, and individual investment funds managed and/or sub-advised by BlackRock Investment Management.

Upon completion of the transaction, RHJI will remain a majority shareholder in KBG, with a stake of approximately 60 per cent.

With its significant market positions in private banking, asset management, corporate business and financial markets, and total assets under management of approximately EUR36bn, BHFBANK represents a strong strategic fit with Kleinwort Benson Group’s existing businesses, which comprise Kleinwort Benson Bank, Kleinwort Benson Channel Islands Holdings and Kleinwort Benson Investors.

Leonhard Fischer (pictured), chief executive officer of Kleinwort Benson Group and RHJ International, says: “BHF-BANK is an attractive business to us, with significant positions across its core businesses, a rich heritage and a strong balance sheet. With their client focus on entrepreneurs, corporates and wealth creators, and strong prospects in their domestic markets, Kleinwort Benson Group and BHFBANK are also strategically well-aligned. We therefore see the proposed acquisition as a significant opportunity to create a strong, client-centric financial services group.”

Henry Ritchotte, chief operating officer of Deutsche Bank, says: “With the planned acquisition of BHF-BANK by Kleinwort Benson Group, we have found the best solution for all parties, in particular for BHF-BANK’s valued clients. For the new, stronger BHFBANK, this can open up sustainable, long-term prospects. Over the last few months, BHF-BANK has implemented its plans to decisively modernize and streamline its banking platform. It is therefore in an outstanding position to continue to operate its realigned business model successfully.”

Björn H. Robens, spokesman of BHF-BANK’s board of managing directors, adds: "The signing is very positive news for our clients and the bank. We are happy that the group of prestigious investors from all over the world confirms the attractiveness of our business model. This reflects the quality of our bank and shows the excellent prospects seen for our bank as a modern partner for companies and entrepreneurs."

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