Australia's Bendigo to buy Victoria state rural finance arm for $1.65bln

SYDNEY Sun May 4, 2014 7:46pm EDT

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SYDNEY May 5 (Reuters) - Australian regional bank Bendigo and Adelaide Bank Ltd said on Monday it plans to buy state-owned Rural Finance Corporation of Victoria for A$1.78 billion ($1.65 billion), a move it said would quadruple the size of its rural loan book.

Bendigo, based in Victoria, Australia's second most populous state, said it will undertake a A$230 million share placement to institutional investors, as well as sell new shares in a separate public offer to finance the acquisition.

($1 = 1.0795 Australian Dollars) (Reporting By Byron Kaye; Editing by Kenneth Maxwell)

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