Sonae and Bankinter merge credit operations
Sonae’s Universo as reached an agreement with Bankinter Consumer Finance to create a joint-venture that foresees the combining of Universo businesses with the management entity for the range of consumer credit products and services offered by Bankinter in Portugal.
In a communiqué sent to the Portuguese stock market regulator CMVM, the holding led by Cláudia Azevedo (pictured) states that the agreement aims to set up “the leading operator in consumer credit in Portugal whose shareholders will be Sonae and Bankinter Consumer Finance, both with a 50% capital share”.
Universo currently has over 1 million clients and a credit portfolio of around €400 million. According to the company’s latest financial report and accounts its business turnover increased €13 million in the first nine months of the year in like-for-like terms, with an EDITDA up by €10 million to September “benefitting from a greater maturity of the credit portfolio and cross-selling initiatives”.
Over recent years Universo has become a benchmark operator in the Portuguese financial services market, leveraging its digital component and contributing towards boosting the performance of the businesses in the group and their ecosystem of partners.
“The agreement with Bankinter aims to leverage this trajectory of success to build the leading operator in consumer credit in Portugal”, says João Dolores, CFO of Sonae.
This partnership with Bankinter has come after Universo made an agreement with Banco CTT to terminate its current agreement in the financial services area on 31 December 2023, the date when there will be an option to purchase the existing credit portfolio within CTT. In separate communiqués both indicate that: “The significant change within the global and macroeconomic context, justifying the need for both parties to revise the terms subjacent to the agreement”.