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BNP to buy 49.9 pct stake in Sundaram Home Finance

French bank BNP Paribas said on Wednesday it will pay 1.97 billion rupees ($48.2 million) for a 49.9 percent stake in India's Sundaram Home Finance Ltd, extending its presence in the fast-growing economy.

BNP Paribas, the euro zone's second biggest bank by market value, already has an Indian asset management joint venture with the Sundaram group, the parent of Sundaram Home Finance.

“A partnership with a strong and reliable local partner such as Sundaram Finance group will enable us to participate in the development of the housing finance industry,” said Laurent Chouraki, chief executive at Union de Credit pour le Batiment (UCB), the wholly owned unit of BNP which will own the stake.

BNP Paribas also runs a life insurance venture with India's largest bank, State Bank of India, and in March it bought 27 percent of retail brokerage and lender Goejit Financial Services Ltd.

Global rivals like Societe Generale, Deutsche Bank and ABN Amro have also been expanding their operations in India.

Sundaram Finance Ltd. will hold the remaining 50.1 percent stake in Sundaram Home Finance.

“Our mutual fund JV with BNP has been doing quite good and profitable for about two years now, so we decided to extend it to home finance,” said T.T. Srinivasaraghavan, managing director at Sundaram Finance.

Source : NDTV Profit

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