DUESSELDORF, Germany Aug 22 HSBC plans
to expand its business with midsize German companies, including
through acquisitions, the bank's Germany chief Andreas Schmitz
said on Thursday.
The British lender will add more staff and products and is
willing to take on more risk to ramp up lending to so-called
Mittelstand companies, which form the backbone of the German
economy, Schmitz said at a press conference.
Parent company HSBC is willing to inject capital to help
build the business, although a capital increase for the German
unit HSBC Trinkaus is not necessary for now, Schmitz said.
Duesseldorf-based HSBC Trinkaus would consider buying the
corporate banking business of cross-town rival IKB if
it was ever put up for sale, Schmitz said, adding "it's worth a
Schmitz clarified that HSBC did not want to bid for the
whole of IKB, but was always on the lookout for opportunities to
win more corporate banking business in Europe's largest economy.
IKB became a high-profile casualty of the credit crisis and
required several bailouts after its off-balance sheet investment
vehicles ran into funding problems in 2007.
Following the rescues, IKB was taken over by
state-controlled bank KfW, which in turn sold IKB to
U.S. private equity investor Lone Star in 2008 for 137
million euros, a deal that included 9.5 billion euros in
After restructuring the lender, Lone Star actively sought
buyers, with the aim of striking a deal by the first quarter of
IKB's owner has been in talks with French bank BNP Paribas
about a sale, but the parties failed to strike a deal
about who should take on the long-term liabilities.
Lone Star declined to comment on Thursday.