The FINANCIAL -- Crédit Agricole S.A. and Société Générale on November 2 announces the launch of the initial public offering of Amundi, their asset management joint venture set up in 2010, on the regulated market of Euronext Paris. This IPO will give Amundi access to a new source of financing, enhance its strategic and financial flexibility and support its development in France and internationally.
As provided for under the shareholders’ agreement entered into upon Amundi’s creation, Société Générale plans to sell the entire 20% it holds in Amundi, equivalent to 33.4 million shares. The two companies will remain bound by their distribution agreements, which have been extended for a renewable period of five years from the completion date of the IPO. In so doing, Société Générale has reaffirmed its long-term industrial partnership with Amundi, which will remain its chosen provider of savings and investment solutions to its retail banking and insurance networks. “We are extremely happy with our special relationship with Amundi, which we view as a long-term business partner for Société Générale in asset management”, stated Frédéric Oudéa, Chief Executive Officer of Société Générale.
Furthermore, in parallel to the initial public offering, Crédit Agricole S.A. has reached an agreement with a subsidiary of Agricultural Bank of China to sell it around 2 per cent of Amundi’s capital at the final IPO price. The purchase of this stake reflects the goal of Agricultural Bank of China and Amundi to expand their cooperation beyond the joint venture set up in 2008. Agricultural Bank of China is one of the top four banks in China2 with 450 million retail customers. Crédit Agricole S.A. has also decided to grant an over-allotment option to the banks coordinating the IPO of 3 per cent of Amundi’s capital to enhance the liquidity of Amundi shares and stabilise market prices in the first few days of trading, according to Société Générale.
Following the initial public offering, the Crédit Agricole Group will remain Amundi’s majority shareholder with a stake of between 74.6% and 77.6%3.
“This transaction confirms the strategic importance of asset management within the Credit Agricole Group, and its role as a key driver of the overall development of the Group” said Philippe Brassac, Chief Executive Officer of Crédit Agricole S.A.