Sabadell negotiates the sale of its subsidiary in Andorra to MoraBanc

Changes in Andorran banking. If a few weeks ago MoraBanc announced the signing of José María Nin as its chairman (he was CEO of Banco Sabadell from 2002 to 2007, and later became number two at CaixaBank), it is now reporting that it has started negotiations with Banco Sabadell to the purchase of the Andorran subsidiary of the bank chaired by Josep Oliu. This would thus be the third sale operation of a Sabadell asset since César González-Bueno was appointed CEO of the entity last March, although he had already been at the bank for two months studying the possible changes that he was going to carry out. .

The Spanish bank, in this way, chooses not to sell its subsidiaries in the United Kingdom, TSB, or Mexico, but it does sell its subsidiaries in Andorra, a long-standing member of the group, although the Catalan entity intends to focus its attention on Spain.

Both MoraBanc and Sabadell have already informed the different supervisors and, if it materializes, the transaction is expected to include the right of minority shareholders to adhere to it, under the same terms as agreed with Banco Sabadell.

González-Bueno has stated that these conversations are part of his strategy of focusing his business activity in Spain and considering those international corporate operations “that make sense both due to the nature of the buyer and the economic conditions raised”. The conversations began as a result of MoraBanc’s interest in BancSabadell d’Andorra, so they decided to contact Oliu directly. Banco Sabadell controls the one that controls about 51% of its capital. PwC and KPMG advise MoraBanc, while Sabadell has hired Deloitte.

BancSabadell d’Andorra currently manages total resources – on balance and off balance – of 1,830 million euros and its volume of loans amounts to 426 million euros. It has a CET1 solvency ratio of 20.4% and an ROE of 10.5%, a market share is close to 20%, it has seven branches and a network of ATMs that serve 23% of individuals and the 32% of Andorran companies.

MoraBanc landed in Spain last year with a securities company, which operates under the MoraWealth brand, and has been trying to grow with purchases for some time, both in Spain and in Andorra. The Andorran bank has affirmed that these conversations seek to give rise to “the leading bank in Andorra in profitability, solvency and domestic business”. Specifically, the operation would give rise to a banking group with more than 9,800 million euros in assets under management, 1,500 million of credit investment and leading solvency ratios in Andorra. “The resulting entity would have a remarkably solid and well capitalized balance sheet to continue supporting the recovery of the Andorran economy,” the statement added.

Sabadell announced last week the sale of its venture capital firm, Aurica Capital, to the management team, and last month it sold its car rental subsidiary to ALD for 59 million. The bank is in a moment of review of its business. On May 28 it will announce its new strategic plan.

The signing of Nin

MoraBanc appointed Juan María Nin has been the entity’s non-executive president since May 1, 2021. Nin takes over from Pedro González Grau. Lluís Alsina enters as CEO and accedes to the board to replace Joan Quera, who ends his term. Within her extensive professional career, Nin has passed through Santander Central Hispano (1980-2002), Sabadell (2002-2007), and through CaixaBank and Fundación La Caixa. AndBank has now also changed its CEO, after promoting the CEO of Spain, Carlos Aso, to CEO of the group. Despite these movements, all the sources consulted assure that, for the moment, there will be no mergers between Andorran banks, with the exception of the purchase operation now announced.


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