Telecom company Orange buys Groupama’s stake in its online banking business
PARIS (Reuters) – Orange, France’s largest telecommunications group, has announced that it will buy insurer Groupama’s 21.7% stake in Orange Bank, its online banking unit, and will also grant the bank a capital increase of 230 million euros (266.4 million dollars).
“To strengthen the development of Orange Bank, Orange continues to invest in its bank,” Orange said in a statement.
Reuters announced in early March that Orange was looking for a new investor for its banking unit.
Orange CEO Stéphane Richard said in April that this quest for a new investor did not mean that the group wanted to sell its banking unit, adding that the telecommunications company would continue “alone” in this adventure if Groupama wanted go out and if he did. not find another partner.
French media reported over the summer that BNP Paribas and Societe Generale were interested in taking a stake but that Orange had ended the discussions, deeming the banks’ requirements too high.
Orange will now own 100% of its banking unit. He did not specify how much he paid Groupama for its participation.
She also indicated that Orange Bank, launched four years ago and which now has 1.6 million customers in France and Spain, would “significantly” reduce its losses in 2021, in part thanks to an increase in its net income. banking, up 57% in the first half of 2021 compared to the same period in 2020.
($ 1 = € 0.8635)
(Reporting by Benoit Van Overstraeten; Editing by Sudip Kar-Gupta)