RPT-Santander to increase its Mexican business ownership to 91.6%

MADRID, Sept 9 (Reuters) - Santander will increase its ownership of its Mexican business to 91.65% from 74.96% after a stock exchange offer, the bank told the Spanish regulator late on Friday.

In April, the Spanish bank announced an offer to take full control of its Mexican business through a close-to 2.6-billion-euro all-share deal as it chases potentially higher returns available from Latin America.

The deal sought to unwind Santander’s listing of 25% of the bank on the Mexican stock exchange in 2012.

But not all the stock holders accepted the offer, meaning that the deal will be for around 1.7 billion euros, taking as a reference the stock’s value on the day the exchange was announced in April, a Santander spokesperson confirmed to Reuters on Saturday.

“We are satisfied with the result of the tender offer in Mexico, particularly given the market conditions in recent weeks. We believe in Mexico, in the potential of its financial sector,” the spokesperson said.

“We are confident that our increased weight in Mexico can support a higher medium and long-term potential growth rate,” the spokesperson added.

After the exchange offer, 8.35% of Santander’s Mexican division will not be held by the bank. It will be materialised by Sept. 17. (Reporting by Joan Faus and Jesus Aguado; editing by Clare Fallon)