Japan’s Sumitomo Mitsui Financial Group Inc. (SMFG) has agreed to buy a 74.9% stake in Fullerton India Credit Company Ltd (FICC), adding to a growing number of deals in the non-bank lending space. Sumitomo will purchase the stake from Singapore’s Temasek-owned Fullerton Financial Holdings Pte Ltd.
The transaction, which is subject to regulatory approvals, will mark the entry of a Japanese bank into the Indian market for retail and business loans to small and mid-sized enterprises.
The plan is for Sumitomo to eventually buy 100% of Fullerton India, according to a statement issued by Sumitomo and Fullerton Financial. Both firms did not give a time frame for Sumitomo to buy the additional 25% stake.
Both firms also did not disclose financial details of the transaction. A person aware of the deal pegged it at $2 billion, making it one of the biggest in India’s non-bank lending sector.
“India is one of our focus markets where we believe in its high growth potential and want to build a deeper presence. As a long-term investor, we believe that FICC platform’s innate strengths of multi-product focus, pan-India distribution, and strong management will enable us to build a comprehensive financial service offering in India,” said Jun Ohta, president and group chief executive, SMFG.
“SMFG is one of the largest financial service groups in Japan offering a diverse range of services. We intend to leverage our expertise in Japan market as well as capabilities of our franchises across key emerging Asian markets,” Ohta said.