Mit­subishi looks for bank ac­qui­si­tions in In­dia

Financial Chronicle - - COMPANIES, MONEY & MARKETS - GARETH AL­LAN & YUKI HAGIWARA

MIT­SUBISHI UFJ Fi­nan­cial Group’s lend­ing arm is seek­ing ac­qui­si­tions of about 100 bil­lion yen ($890 mil­lion) in Asia and the US to bol­ster its global op­er­a­tions, its top ex­ec­u­tive said.

Bank of Tokyo Mit­subishi UFJ, to be re­named MUFG Bank in April, would con­sider tak­ing ma­jor­ity stakes in banks in coun­tries such as In­done­sia or In­dia in ad­di­tion to the US, chief ex­ec­u­tive of­fi­cer Kanet­sugu Mike said in an in­ter­view.

While Ja­pan’s big­gest bank has pre­vi­ously sig­naled in­ter­est in buy­ing lenders in the coun­tries, it’s the first time a se­nior ex­ec­u­tive has in­di­cated how much it might spend. Mike, 60, said any de­ci­sion would be based on strate­gic fit, price and prof­itabil­ity, while not­ing that U.S. tar­gets are “ex­pen­sive” at the mo­ment.

Ja­pan’s big­gest banks are ex­pand­ing abroad to make up for de­clin­ing loan prof­itabil­ity and a shrink­ing pop­u­la­tion at home. In the US, MUFG owns a bank with a heavy pres­ence in California, and is the largest share­holder in Mor­gan Stan­ley. It bought stakes in banks in the Philip­pines, Thai­land and Viet­nam in re­cent years. Over­seas busi­ness re­mains “a driver of growth for both the bank and the group,” Mike told a group of re­porters in Tokyo.

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