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Grupo Aval to List Shares in New York, Mexico, Chairman Says

Grupo Aval Acciones y Valores SA, Colombia’s biggest financial holding company, seeks to list shares this year in New York and Mexico, Chairman Luis Carlos Sarmiento Angulo said.

Sarmiento spoke today in Bogota at an event marking the first day of trading for Aval’s preferred shares on Colombia’s exchange. The $1.1 billion sale of the shares for 1,300 pesos each, which was more than 50 percent oversubscribed, was the biggest in Colombian history by a non-state company, he said.

The preferred shares rose 1.2 percent to 1,315 pesos at 1:57 p.m. New York time, after falling as much as 2.7 percent to 1,265 pesos earlier in the day. The company’s common shares declined 2.6 percent to 1,310 pesos, the lowest since November on an intraday basis.

The common shares have retreated 23 percent this year, the second-most for a company on the Colombian bourse after Canacol Energy Ltd.

Sarmiento said the only foreign investors who bid on the preferred share sale were from Chile and Peru. The stock markets of Colombia, Chile and Peru will integrate their operations on May 30, allowing market participants to trade stocks in all three countries.

Aval is considering acquisitions of banks in Central America to expand its reach in that region, said Luis Carlos Sarmiento Gutierrez, Sarmiento’s son and Aval’s president.

Colombian companies will raise a record $3.7 billion this year through share issuance as the country’s economy grows at the fastest rate since 2007 and as the government’s gains against guerrilla and drug violence boost investor confidence, said Cesar Cuervo, senior analyst at Correval SA.

Aval’s holdings include Banco de Bogota, Banco AV Villas and Banco de Occidente SA, Colombia’s fifth-biggest lender.

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