PNC Eyes Buying US Unit Of Spain’s BBVA, Report Says

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PNC Financial Services Group could buy the U.S. arm of Spain-based BBVA for over $11 billion, which could be one of the largest bank acquisitions since the financial crisis over a decade ago, The Wall Street Journal (WSJ) reported, with the deal potentially announced as soon as Monday (Nov. 16).

The deal, the report stated, would result in a bank with over $550 billion in assets and the fifth-largest retail bank in the country.

The acquisition could have the effect of boosting PNC’s presence in the southeast and west where the markets are growing quickly, according to WSJ. BBVA bought Alabama’s Compass Bancshares in 2007 and has around $100 billion in assets in the U.S., including branches around the Sunbelt with a large presence in Texas. PNC’s strongest presences are in the mid-Atlantic, Midwest and Southeast.

PNC has been considered one of the more likely contenders to help consolidate the broken-up U.S. banking sector, WSJ reported, having recently added fuel to that fire by becoming involved in a sale of its stake in BlackRock for $15 billion. That roped in funds that could be used for acquisitions.

Big bank mergers have been scarce in the past decade since the financial crisis of the late 2000s, but despite that rarity, regional lenders have felt the crunch from bigger rivals like J.P. Morgan Chase and Bank of America, which have been bringing in deposits through digital apps, marketing and nationwide branch networks, WSJ reported.

A deal would also signal a BBVA pullback from the U.S., according to WSJ.

Shayan Khwaja, BBVA executive vice president and director of consumer lending, spoke with PYMNTS about the must-haves of the future, explaining more digital onboarding is needed alongside collaborations that show consumers more information about how they’re spending.

BBVA is one of several banks collaborating with Google to offer digital accounts.

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