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17 Nov 2008
Moody's upgrades Banco Santander's financial strength to C; local currency deposits to A2
New York, November 17, 2008 -- Moody's Investors Service upgraded to C from C- (C minus) the bank
financial strength rating (BFSR) assigned to Banco Santander S.A.(Santander).
The rating agency also raised Santander's global local currency
deposit rating to A2 from A3, with a stable outlook, and short-term
rating to Prime-1 from Prime-2. The Ba2/Not Prime
global foreign currency deposit ratings, currently constrained by
the foreign currency deposit ceiling, and Aaa.br/BR-1
Brazilian national scale deposit ratings for Santander were affirmed.
In a corresponding action, Moody's withdrew ratings for Banco
ABN AMRO Real S.A. (Banco Real).
The existing long-term foreign currency junior subordinated debt
rating of Baa3 assigned to Banco Santander S.A., Cayman
Branch, was also affirmed.
The rating actions follow the completion of the acquisition of Banco Real
by Banco Santander effective on August 29, 2008, following
the shareholders' meeting, and the presentation of its combined
consolidated financial statements on October 31, 2008.
Moody's said the upgrade of Santander's BFSR to C is prompted
by the more robust franchise in terms of market share and scale that results
from the acquisition, together with increased geographic and customer
diversification. The combined institution forms the 4th largest
bank by assets in Brazil, with deposit and loan market shares of
11.4%.and 11.8% respectively,
and with substantially enhanced earnings capacity in all major market
Although Santander intends to keep the two brands separated until 2010,
the banks' operations were already consolidated and are managed
Moody's indicated that the Santander Group in Brazil will benefit
considerably from the acquisition of Banco Real's complementary
business platforms. Banco Real's strong positioning in the
retail segment should boost the group's competitiveness in the highly
competitive first-tier segment of the Brazilian banking industry.
The acquisition is also consistent with Santander's strategy to
consolidate and strengthen its retail brand, in keeping with its
approach in other Latin American countries. Management expects
to achieve throughout 2011 R$2.4 billion in expense savings
and an additional R$300 million in revenue gains through employing
best practices and through synergies within its global units.
Nevertheless, Moody's says the integration process carries
potential risks given the large size of the operation. Delays beyond
management's expectations may occur and restructuring costs may
be higher than predicted. Such challenges could constrain growth
prospects, and thus compromise profitability targets.
Moody's adds that Santander's A2 deposit ratings incorporate
three main elements: (1) the bank's BFSR of C, which translates
into a baseline credit assessment of A3; (2) Moody's assessment of
moderate support from its owner, Banco Santander S.A.
(Spain); and (3) Moody's assessment of a good probability of support
from the Brazilian authorities, given the bank's significant
participation in the Brazilian deposit market.
As of September 30, 2008, Banco Santander S.A.,
including Banco Real, presented pro-foma total assets of
R$301.7 billion (US$158.8 billion) and pro-forma
equity of R$24.2 billion (US$12.8 billion).
The following ratings of Banco Santander S.A. were upgraded:
Bank financial strength rating: to C from C-, with
Long-term global local currency deposit rating: to A2 from
A3, with stable outlook;
Short-term global local currency deposit rating: to Prime-1
The following ratings were affirmed:
Banco Santander S.A.: Long and short-term foreign
currency deposit ratings of Ba2 / Not Prime, respectively;
long and short-term national scale ratings in Brazil of Aaa.br/BR-1,
respectively; with stable outlook
Banco Santander S.A. -- Cayman Branch: long-term
foreign currency junior subordinate debt rating: Baa3, with
The following ratings of Banco ABN AMRO Real S.A. were withdrawn:
Bank financial strength rating -- C;
Long and short-term foreign currency deposit ratings --
Ba2/Not Prime, respectively
Vice President - Senior Analyst
Financial Institutions Group
Moody's America Latina Ltda.
M. Celina Vansetti
Senior Vice President
Financial Institutions Group
Moody's Investors Service
No Related Data.
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