July 14, 2015 / 1:30 PM / 4 years ago

Scotiabank to buy Citigroup assets in Panama and Costa Rica

Snow covers the Scotiabank logo at the Bank of Nova Scotia headquarters in Toronto December 16, 2013. REUTERS/Chris Helgren

TORONTO (Reuters) - Bank of Nova Scotia (BNS.TO) said on Tuesday it will buy Citigroup Inc’s (C.N) retail and commercial banking operations in Panama and Costa Rica, expanding its presence in Central America.

The Canadian lender, which operates under the Scotiabank banner, said the deal will lift its market share in credit cards to about 18 percent in Panama and to 15 percent in Costa Rica, ranking it No. 2 in both countries in the segment.

Citibank, which has been operating in Costa Rica since 1968 and in Panama since 1904, said it will continue to provide corporate and institutional banking and wealth-management services in the countries following the close of the deal.

The terms of the transaction, which will nearly triple Scotiabank’s customer base in the two countries, to roughly 387,000 from about 137,000, were not disclosed.

Reporting by Euan Rocha; Editing by Peter Galloway

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