RHJ International (RHJI) said it has the support of co-investors for a potential purchase of Deutsche Bank AG (DBK)’s BHF-Bank unit as the Belgian company seeks to add assets in the financial-services industry.
RHJ’s Kleinwort Benson Group unit has entered an informal review process with Germany’s Bafin financial markets regulator, the Brussels-based company said today in a statement. RHJ didn’t identify the planned deal’s backers.
Deutsche Bank has sought a buyer for BHF, which offers wealth management and investment banking, since acquiring it through the purchase of Sal. Oppenheim Group in 2010. Bafin’s approval is essential for RHJ to acquire the business as Deutsche Bank’s plan to sell to LGT Group last year failed after the regulator voiced concern about the acquisition by the bank owned by the family of Liechtenstein’s prince.
RHJ and Deutsche Bank entered exclusive negotiations on BHF-Bank in July. A purchase of Frankfurt-based BHF-Bank would complement Kleinwort Benson Group’s services in the U.K., the Channel Islands and Ireland, RHJ said at the time.
A sale of BHF-Bank would follow on Deutsche Bank’s sale of Actavis Group hf to Watson Pharmaceuticals Inc. (WPI:US) announced in April. Germany’s largest bank said in February that it booked 97 million euros ($121 million) of expenses related to BHF-Bank.
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