Safra Sarasin to Buy Credit Suisse Units in Monaco, Gibraltar

  • Deal expected to double client assets in Monaco, Gibraltar
  • Safra Sarasin may consider other opportunities in Monaco

J. Safra Sarasin Holding Ltd., the Swiss private bank and asset manager owned by billionaire Joseph Safra, agreed to acquire Credit Suisse Group AG’s private-banking businesses in Monaco and Gibraltar.

Safra Sarasin will add the units to existing operations in the two jurisdictions and expects the transaction to be completed this year, subject to regulatory approval, the company said in a statement on Tuesday. It didn’t disclose the terms.

“We will more than double our size in Monaco and Gibraltar and we will rank among the top players in those areas,” Ilan Hayim, chairman of Safra Sarasin’s Swiss bank, said in a telephone interview. “If the opportunities arise, we might consider other acquisitions in Monaco.”

Safra Sarasin is expanding through deals after integrating Morgan Stanley’s Swiss private-banking business, which it bought last year. The company is part of a network of banks also spanning the U.S. and Brazil controlled by Joseph Safra, Brazil’s second-richest individual, who is worth about $13.1 billion, according to the Bloomberg Billionaires Index.

Most of the Credit Suisse business being acquired is with onshore local residents, rather than offshore clients living in other countries, Hayim said. Safra Sarasin is acquiring Credit Suisse’s banks as legal entities, not just as client assets, he said, declining to comment further.

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