Signing of a Memorandum of Understanding with HBCE to acquire its retail banking activities in France
igning of a Memorandum of Understanding with HBCE to acquire its retail banking activities in France
My Money Group announces the signing of a Memorandum of Understanding with HBCE to acquire its retail banking activities in France
• Envisaged transaction to add high-quality retail bank network with 244 retail branches and 3,900 experienced employees serving approximately 800,000 customers across France
• Combination aims to re-establish and build on the Crédit Commercial de France (CCF) brand, well known for the excellency of its retail banking expertise and wealth management solutions
• Combined company would create an independent challenger French bank with a broad portfolio of high-quality offerings
• Transaction is subject to regulatory and antitrust approvals, as well as work councils’ consultation
My Money Group, a leading independent French banking group, announced today that it has signed a Memorandum of Understanding with HSBC Continental Europe (HBCE) in view of the proposed acquisition of HBCE’s retail banking in France.
The scope excludes its insurance and asset management businesses. HSBC Assurances Vie, HSBC Global Asset Management and HSBC REIM would pursue their current operations and enter into a long-term distribution agreement with My Money Group that would cover their insurance and asset management products (representing approximately €25 billion of assets under management).
“We are very excited to announce that we have signed a Memorandum of Understanding with HBCE for the proposed acquisition of its retail network in France,” said Eric Shehadeh, Chief Executive Officer of My Money Group. “It is a unique opportunity to accelerate our expansion plans and to develop for our French customers differentiating wealth management solutions. My Money Group, with the backing of funds managed by Cerberus Capital Management, can support the growth of HBCE’s French retail network by applying our market knowledge and expertise in digital transformation. Together, we would build on CCF’s legacy and re-establish the brand as a leading franchise for wealth management customers in France.”
David Teitelbaum, Head of European Advisory Offices and Head of Global FIG Advisory for Cerberus, commented: “This transaction would be one of the most significant events in the French banking market in recent years. We are honoured that HBCE has chosen My Money Group as the preferred partner for its iconic French retail network. The combination would create a premier, independent French bank with scale and a broad portfolio of high-quality offerings for customers. We are excited to support the combined company’s bright future and ongoing growth in the French market.”
A transformational acquisition for My Money Group
My Money Group, born out of General Electric (GE)’s 1995 acquisition of SOVAC bank, initially established by André Citroën in 1919, is an independent player on the French market with approximately 850 employees serving more than 250,000 customers. It provides specialty financing solutions to consumers and real-estate lending for corporates under the brand name My Money Bank (ex GE Money Bank). With over a 60-year presence in French Overseas Territories, My Money Group has also been a trusted partner to customers in Martinique, Guadeloupe, French Guyana (Somafi-Soguafi, Banque des Caraïbes) and La Reunion Island (Sorefi). My Money Group receives long-term support from its shareholders, funds managed by Cerberus Capital Management, L.P. (“Cerberus”), a global leader in alternative investing with extensive expertise in the European financial sector.
The retail network of HBCE is a key player in the banking sector in France and specialises in serving affluent customers. With an outstanding reputation and talented teams known for their professionalism, the bank has a well-established base of loyal clients across France. Over the past few years, its growth has been driven by its home loan operations and wealth management solutions.
The proposed acquisition of HBCE’s French retail banking network is a transformational opportunity to build upon My Money Group’s operational and financial strengths. Following the acquisition, My Money Group would acquire a network of approximately 800,000 customers, 244 retail branches and approximately 3,900 skilled employees, with assets of approximately 24 billion euros (c. 1.2% NPL ratio), approximately €21 billion in customer loans and 19 billion euros in retail deposits. The combined businesses would create an exciting and diverse challenger bank in the French market.
Capitalize on CCF’s strong brand, deep DNA and customer trust to establish a challenger bank
The retail banking market in France is challenged by a low-interest-rate environment, lack of technological investments and intense competition. In this context, the plan laid out by My Money Group involves re-establishing the CCF brand, which has a respected reputation and enjoys extraordinary customer trust. My Money Group, an independent player and a specialist in digital transformation, would extend its expertise to the new CCF with significant capital investments to create a growing and profitable participant in the market.
The new CCF would build on its heritage of excellence, leveraging its renowned expertise in wealth management advice and expanding its strong customer relationships by providing innovative offerings. My Money Group would modernise the franchise, improving its agility and bringing new momentum to accelerate its digital transformation, and bolster its omnichannel model. The combined teams would work together to bring out the best in each businesses’ cultures, skills, expertise and commercial platforms.
Added benefits for stakeholders
My Money Group would commit to structurally change HBCE’s French retail network by:
• Improving customer service quality;
• Implementing digital solutions;
• Developing new tailored and adapted wealth management products;
• Creating strategic partnerships with external players offering specialist services;
• Investing 200 million euros to improve internal processes by overhauling digital architecture;
• Leveraging an established technology platform of a premier bank to facilitate this transformation.
The new CCF, as an independent French bank, would provide its customers personalised services and support as well as renewed and tailored products.
My Money Group is committed to maintaining a very strong balance sheet, liquidity profile, prudent risk management and an “investment grade” credit rating.
Suggested timeline and next steps
The signing of the Memorandum of Understanding received support from the Board of Directors of both HBCE and My Money Group.
As required by French law, the Memorandum of Understanding states that HBCE and My Money Group must inform and consult their employee representatives on the proposed transaction. If, following the completion of the prior information and consultation procedures, HBCE and My Money Group were to decide to proceed with the proposed transaction, they would then enter into a binding agreement, which could be signed during the third quarter or early fourth quarter of 2021. The envisaged transaction must also be authorised by official regulatory and competition authorities. The close of the transaction is expected in the first half of 2023.
My Money Group will inform the market of any significant changes in the operation.
Further financial information
As of 31 December 2020, the loan portfolio of HBCE’s French retail banking network was composed of 94% home loans and 6% in other loans (including personal loans, overdraft and equipment loans). Deposits consisted of 57% current accounts, 22% regulated savings accounts and 21% non-regulated savings accounts. The loss before tax for the business was €236 million for the financial year ended 31 December 2020.
For illustrative purposes, the combined entity, comprising My Money Group and HBCE’s French retail banking network, would have :
• Total assets of €31 billion (76% from contributed business);
• RWAs of €12.5 billion (65% from contributed business);
• NBI of €0.6 billion (68% from contributed business);
• Covered bonds of €4.9 billion (67% from contributed business);
• Loans of €27.6 billion (78% from contributed business);
• And deposits of €22.8 billion (83% from contributed business).
Combined CET1 ratio at close is expected to be at least 15%.
Financial and legal advisors
Goldman Sachs and Rothschild are acting as financial advisors and Cleary Gottlieb Steen & Hamilton LLP as legal advisor to My Money Group.
About My Money Group
My Money Group is an independent French banking group focused on consumer finance (including remortgages, personal loans, car financing and commercial real estate) as well as specialised lending to commercial clients. The bank provides its clients superior customer service and financial solutions. My Money Group operates in mainland France and in the French Overseas Territories. It has offices in Paris, an operational centre of excellence in Nantes, and franchises in Martinique, Guadeloupe, French Guyana (Somafi-Soguafi, Banque des Caraïbes) and La Reunion Island (Sorefi).
My Money Group’s institutional website www.mymoneybank.com contains further financial and other information for investors.
About HSBC Continental Europe
HSBC Continental Europe is a subsidiary of HSBC Holdings plc. HSBC Continental Europe is headquartered in Paris. HSBC Continental Europe includes, in addition to its banking activities in France, the activities of 10 European branches (Belgium, Spain, Greece, Ireland, Italy, Luxembourg, Netherlands, Poland, Czech Republic and Sweden). HSBC Continental Europe’s mission is to serve customers in continental Europe for their needs worldwide and customers in other Group countries for their needs in continental Europe.
Founded in 1992, Cerberus is a global leader in alternative investing with approximately $55 billion in assets across complementary credit, private equity, and real estate strategies. Cerberus invests across the capital structure where its integrated investment platforms and proprietary operating capabilities create an edge to improve performance and drive long-term value. Cerberus tenured teams have experience working collaboratively across asset classes, sectors, and geographies to seek strong risk-adjusted returns for its investors. For more information about Cerberus people and platforms, visit its website at www.cerberus.com.
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