UNIONBANK of the Philippines has completed the acquisition of the majority stake of PETNET, Inc., effectively consolidating Aboitiz Equity Ventures’ (AEV) interests in financial services.
In a disclosure to the local bourse on Tuesday, Aboitiz-led UnionBank said its subsidiaries CitySavings Bank, Inc. and Union Properties, Inc. signed on Monday the respective deed of absolute sale with AEV for the sale of the holding company’s 51% stake in PETNET.
Under the deal, the subsidiaries acquired 2.46 million shares in PETNET at P487.54 apiece, which is based on the agreed enterprise value of PETNET and its assets, net of the amount attributable to the other shareholders of PETNET.
CitySavings now owns 40% of the PETNET, while Union Properties holds the remaining 11% of the common shares.
“The acquisition by CitySavings and UPI of a significant stake in PETNET will enable the bank to better align its strategies and take direct control of the business decisions in the latter,” the Aboitiz-led UnionBank was quoted as saying in the disclosure.
“This will enable PETNET to deliver a customer experience consistent with that of UnionBank.”
PETNET, known under the retail brand PERA HUB, has the largest network of Western Union outlets in the Philippines. With over 2,800 outlets nationwide, it offers a variety of cash-based services including remittance, currency exchange and bills payment.
CitySavings, the thrift lending arm of UnionBank, intends to take advantage of PERA HUB’s retail network and expand its existing loans marketing partnership with PETNET to boost its market reach.
The acquisition gives the commercial bank a platform to conduct agency banking, in which lenders can employ third-party outlets to perform basic banking services in their behalf.
In May, UnionBank received the approval of the Philippine Competition Commission for the said acquisition.
The Aboitiz-led lender booked a P6.1-billion net profit in the first nine months, lower than P6.4 billion a year ago, due to higher rates and its inability to issue loans for teachers.
Shares in UnionBank closed at P63.50 apiece on Tuesday, down 45 centavos or 0.70% from the previous session. — K.A.N. Vidal