DBS Group Holdings Ltd. (DBS), Southeast Asia’s largest lender, cut its stake in Bank of the Philippine Islands in half, strengthening its capital position.
Ayala Corp. (AC), a Philippine real-estate developer, will pay S$757.3 million ($620 million) for a 10.4 percent stake, the Singapore-based lender said in an e-mailed statement yesterday. DBS, an investor in the bank since 1999, will keep a 9.9 percent stake.
DBS has been trying to increase the share of its earnings from overseas markets, including Indonesia and China, since Piyush Gupta took over as chief executive officer in November 2009. The stake sale will help strengthen the bank’s capital before new international rules known as Basel III are introduced next year.
“DBS has been a strategic investor in BPI for over a decade and it remains an attractive investment,” Gupta said in a statement. “The transaction will allow us to continue being a meaningful shareholder in a capital-efficient manner.”
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