Santander Buys Mexico Unit Stake for $2.5B

Banco Santander reached an agreement to buy the 24.9% stake in Santander Mexico it doesn't already own from Bank of America for $2.5 billion.
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MADRID (

TheStreet

) --

Banco Santander

(STD)

reached an agreement to buy the 24.9% stake in Santander Mexico it doesn't already own from

Bank of America

(BAC) - Get Report

for $2.5 billion.

Banco Santander's stake in the Mexican unit will be 99.9%, the company said in statement Wednesday.

"This acquisition reinforces Santander's commitment to Mexico, a country with a very positive outlook for growth, and furthers the geographic diversification of our group," said Banco Santander Chairman Emilio Botin, in a statement.

Banco Santander said it sold the 24.9% stake to Bank of America in 2003 for $1.6 billion, valuing the bank at $6.4 billion. The current transaction values theMexican unit at $10 billion.

Santander Mexico is the third biggest financial group in Mexico with a 13% share in loans and 14.8% in deposits.

-- Reported by Joseph Woelfel in New York.

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