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Ant Group Secures Credit Suisse's Investment Bank Venture in China by Outbidding Citadel

Credit Suisse sought around 2 billion yuan for the entire China unit, including the stake held by Founder Securities.

Ant Group Co. has successfully outbid Citadel Securities LLC for Credit Suisse's investment bank venture in China. According to sources familiar with the matter, this unexpected move is poised to undergo rigorous regulatory scrutiny.

Potential Challenges for Ant Group in the Securities Business

Fortune noted that the bid by Jack Ma-backed Ant Group to establish a securities business using Credit Suisse's operations is expected to face a comprehensive review.

As per Bloomberg, China's preference for a foreign buyer complicates the situation, creating a potential hurdle for Ant Group's acquisition plans.

UBS Group AG, the current owner of Credit Suisse, finds itself at a crossroads. The bank must decide between the higher bid from Ant Group and the lower offer from Citadel Securities, which stands a better chance of government approval. This decision-making process is critical in determining the future of Credit Suisse's China unit.

Global Interest in Credit Suisse's Unit Declines Amid Geopolitical Tensions

UBS struggles to attract interest in the unit from global firms due to escalating geopolitical tensions and economic challenges. The bank's efforts are further complicated by Founder Securities' potential rejection of Citadel's lower offer, potentially leading to delays in the sale process.

Citadel Securities, led by billionaire Ken Griffin, emerged as the sole global firm to submit a bid for Credit Suisse's China unit. Their offer, ranging from 1.5 billion yuan to 2 billion yuan, presents a substantial investment opportunity in the region.

Credit Suisse sought around 2 billion yuan for the entire China unit, including the stake held by Founder Securities. Previous buyout attempts, including a collapsed deal valuing the firm at about 2.3 billion yuan, highlight the complexities of the negotiation process.

UBS's Obligation to Find a Buyer for the Credit Suisse Platform

Due to regulations prohibiting the ownership of two licenses in the same business sector in China, UBS is mandated to secure a buyer for the Credit Suisse platform. After discontinuing its wealth operation last year, the unit primarily focuses on investment banking and brokerage services.

Photo: Mariia Shalabaieva/Unsplash

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