Acquisition of 51% of Banco Colpatria by Scotiabank

Arias, Fábrega & Fábrega represented Colombia's Mercantil Colpatria SA, Banco Colpatria Multibanca Colpatria SA and its Panamanian branch Banco Colpatria Multibanca Colpatria SA, in connection with  the acquisition of 51 percent of the shares of Banco Colpatria Multibanca Colpatria SA for US$1 billion, by the Bank of Nova Scotia, commonly known as Scotiabank.

ARIFA advised Mercantil Colpatria SA in both the restructuring of its Panamanian operations and corporate structure, and acquisition of the Banco Colpatria's Panamanian operations. Mercantil Colpatria SA, the parent of Banco Colpatria, retains 48.7 percent ownership in the bank.

The purchase will entail US$500m in cash and 10 million Scotiabank shares. The acquisition enables the Canadian financial institution to enjoy the prospect of significant growth opportunities in Colombia

About Banco Colpatria
Banco Colpatria, with assets of US$6.4 billion and deposits of US$4.4 billion (as of November 2011), is Colombia's fifth largest financial group and one of the country's leading lenders with a positive track record of growth. The bank is the second largest credit card issuer in Colombia and also offers commercial and consumer loans and home mortgages through its network of 175 branches and 308 ATMs.