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Australia's Westpac gets approval for Lloyds acquisition

(Credit: Reuters) The image shows the corporate logo of Lloyds Banking Group.Lloyds Banking Group
December 4
11:14 PM 2013

The Australia Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC) has granted approval for Westpac Bank to acquire Lloyds Banking Group's Australian assets. The transaction is valued at USD1.45 billion.

The said deal is Westpac's largest acquisition in five years. The transaction included a portfolio of loans and Capital Finance, the motor vehicle leasing arm of Lloyds. According to Sydney Morning Herald, Westpac will be realizing car loans amounting to USD3.9 billion from the deal.

St. George, a bank owned by Westpac, already controlled 25% of the leasing finance industry. The ACCC needed to review the deal to make sure that the acquisition would not affect the level of competition in the market. After examining competition from financiers of Toyota, ANZ, Macquarie Group, and Nissan, the ACCC determined that the purchase of Lloyds would not substantially decrease competition in the car loans market.

The Lloyds acquisition gained attention from large banks in Australia including Commonwealth Bank, Macquarie Group, NAB, and ANZ. The approved deal could help foster Westpac's growth amidst a market with slow growth.

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