Mon, Dec 29, 2008 - Page 12 News List

SinoPac to beef up merger and acquisition activities

STAFF WRITER

SinoPac Financial Holding Co (永豐金控) has earmarked the upcoming year to accelerate its merger and acquisition (M&A) activities with expansion in mind, company chief executive McKinney Tsai (蔡友才) said on Friday.

“This will be the best year for M&As,” Tsai was quoted as saying by Chinese-language Economic Daily News.

Tsai said that SinoPac Financial securities arm, trust unit and banking subsidiaries all have plans to acquire smaller rivals after Bank SinoPac (永豐銀) has decided to raise NT$10 billion (US$302.8 million) through the issuance of bonds, which will be used for acquisition plans.

The company, moreover, had decided, on Friday, to consolidate by merging Bank SinoPac with its credit-card subsidiary to create synergy and enhance efficiency.

The internal merger is slated to be completed at the end of March, the company’s press statement said.

The company also reshuffled its board with a new line-up of top executives on Friday while creating two new top positions: chief investment officer and chief financial officer.

Chang Chin-yuan (張晉源), formerly a SinoPac senior vice president, was promoted to CIO while Ted Liao (廖達德), formerly the company’s spokesman and vice president, was promoted to CFO, the company’s statement added.

Chuang Min-fu (莊銘福), former a vice president of China Development Holding Co (開發金控), was further named to be its securities arm’s new president while Chen Mei-jing (陳美靜), formerly the securities arm’s president was promoted to chair the company’s trust unit, the statement added.

Most of the new staff have experience in M&As and are expected to compliment the company’s expansion plan, local media said.

In particular, Chang will be put in charge of the company’s M&A plan, Tsai said.

During his chairmanship at KGI Securities’ (凱基證券) Korean outlet, Chang helped put the unit for sale and knocked in NT$2.3 billion for the securities brokerage, which is why Tsia hired him, the report said.

After taking a hit from structured investment vehicle (SIV) losses last year, SinoPac Financial strove to improve its finances.

SinoPac Financial’s bad-loan ratio has been declined to 1.42 percent from 1.7 percent last year while its coverage ratio has jumped from from 40 percent to 70 percent at the same time, Tsai said.

After the bond issuance and the merger between banking and credit-card units, the financial service provider’s bank of international settlement (BIS) ratio will be improved from current 10.44 percent, Tsai said.

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