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KFB deal finalised as Standard Chartered eyes growth in South Korea

KFB deal finalised as Standard Chartered eyes growth in South Korea

(18 April 2005 – South Korea) Standard Chartered has completed the acquisition of Korea First Bank for US$3.3 billion and said it aims to significantly grow its position in South Korea on the back of the investment. The purchase of KFB, which has 3.5 million customers and 406 branches, is the largest acquisition by a foreign bank in South Korea. Standard Chartered said its intention was to become the fifth largest lender in South Korea by 2012.

Standard Chartered chief executive Mervyn Davies said the first step was to integrate the two businesses, and that he believed the combined business would post a profit in 2006.

"We will generate significant business growth by combining Korea First bank’s nationwide platform with our broad range of wholesale and consumer banking products and by using our international network to help Korean companies," Davies said.

Standard Chartered bought a 48.6 percent stake from US investment fund Newbridge Capital and the shares owned by the South Korean government, which it sunk into the bank in the wake of the financial crisis in 1998.

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