Guber, a leading independent Npl servicer in Italy with about 7.5 billion euros in AuM at the end of December 2017, is now a bank, Guber Banca, after having cashed in a banking license by the European Central Bank (see here the press release). In the process Guber was advised by Parente & Partners.
Guber Banca is controlled with a 66.7% stake by founders Francesco Guarneri and Gianluigi Bertini while US asset management firm Varde Partners bought a 33.3% stake in March 2017 paying 47 million euros (see here a previous post by BeBeez). With that deal Varde entered the quite rich Italian Npl market following a number of other international investors that had chosen to buy an Italian platform to manage non performing loans in Italy
Founded in 1991, Guber operates all over Italy with more than 180 employees and a network of 280 legal counsels. Guber Banca will be a digital bank focused on SMEs financing and investing and managing bad loans and unlikely-to-pay loans while funding will be provided thanks to online deposits.
This is the same business description that you may read in the business plan published by Spaxs, the Special purpose acquisition company (Spac) promoted by former top manager, banker and Italian Development Ministry Crrado Passera together with former banca Ifis’ head of NPLs area Andrea Clamer, which raised 600 million euros and listed last February at the Aim Italia market targeting a small bank in order to transform it in a digital bank, financing SMEs and buying and managing NPLs (see here a previous post by BeBeez). This will mean that Spaxs is going to face a strong competitor just before starting its business. Unless the competitor turns into a target.
Speaking of potential targets for Spaxs’ acquisition, rumors are that it might be Banca Interprovinciale, a small bank based in Modena in Northern Italy with just 5 branches and owned by a group of Italian entrepreneurs and private investors with Cassa di Risparmio di Rimini as a minority shareholder (9.22%). Another potential target for Spaxs is said to be Banco delle Tre Venezie based in Padoa, but hot dossiers are said a total of 12 (see here FinanzaReport).