October 31, 2019 / 10:32 PM / 7 months ago

Colombia's Grupo Aval to buy Multibank Financial Group

BOGOTA, Oct 31 (Reuters) - Grupo Aval, Colombia’s largest financial conglomerate, said on Thursday it had agreed to buy Panama’s Multibank Financial Group (MFG), giving it a higher profile in Central America.

The transaction - which Aval will conduct through its subsidiary Banco de Bogota - will close in the second quarter of 2020, after completing a regulatory process, the company said in a statement to Colombia’s financial regulator.

It did not disclose the cost of the acquisition.

As of June last year, MFG had consolidated assets of about $5 billion and equity of some $560 million.

“This attractive transaction is complementary to the type of businesses that the company already participates in in Panama,” Grupo Aval president Luis Carlos Sarmiento said in the statement.

“Aval will strengthen its leadership position in Central America and become the second-largest player in Panama by size of assets.”

Aval already operates in Central America through its subsidiary BAC Credomatic. In Colombia it controls four commercial banks and private pension fund Porvenir. (Reporting by Nelson Bocanegra Writing by Julia Symmes Cobb; Editing by Tom Brown)

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