FERRERE advised Scotiabank in the acquisition of all of the Uruguayan government’s remaining preferred shares in Banco Comercial which common stock it had acquired in 2011in the context of the largest banking M&A transaction of Uruguay’s history.
Scotiabank was already the owner of all of the BancoComercial common stock, and, after this transaction, transformed BancoComercial into a Scotiabank 100% subsidiary.
US$ 37 million of preferred shares were bought back by Banco Comercial itself while the remaining US$ 13 million were acquired by Scotiabank. The acquisition ended a 2006 shareholders and syndication agreement with the Uruguayan government that had been executed by former BancoComercial owner (an Advent led consortium that had bought Banco Comercial in the context of its 2006 privatization). The parties had originally foreseen a process that would have led to buying out the Uruguayan government by 2014 but in mid-2012 Scotiabank promoted such process’ acceleration.
Diego Rodriguez stated: “This acquisition finished a process that started in 2010 when Scotiabank decided to step into the Uruguayan market. When in 2011 Scotiabank closed the BancoComercial and Pronto acquisitions, it became a key player of the Uruguayan banking market that has been particularly dynamic in recent years, both in terms of growth and consolidation. This new investment in the acquisition of all of the remaining BancoComercial shares is yet another evidence of Scotiabank’s commitment to the Uruguayan market. We are particularly pleased with the fast approval that the Central Bank rendered to this transaction.”