Japan’s Sumitomo Mitsui Financial Group (SMFG) is reportedly in final talks to take a 10% stake in SBI Holdings, according to local media reports quoted by Reuters. Nikkei Business says that the deal could be worth more than JPY 60 billion, or $443 million.
Nikkei reported that SBI might also take a small stake in SMFG as part of the deal, which aims to strengthen its securities businesses domestically. SBI’s online securities business may be introduced to SMFG’s retail banking customers through the partnership.
In an effort to offer a trading platform alternative to the Tokyo Stock Exchange, the two have already teamed up to create a digital stock exchange.
Its brokerage unit, SMBC Nikko Securities Inc, has been under investigation since some of its executives were arrested over alleged market manipulation by SMFG, Japan’s second-largest lender by assets. The matter is being investigated by SMBC Nikko. After Mitsubishi UFJ Financial Group, Sumitomo Mitsui, and Mizuho Financial Group, SBI intends to become the fourth-largest bank in Japan.
The company already owns the country’s largest online brokerage, an online bank, and an asset manager. Last year, it increased its stake in midsize lender Shinsei Bank to 48% through a $1 billion tender offer, hoping to create a nationwide network.
In December, one of Singapore’s largest cryptocurrency exchanges, Coinhako, announced an investment by SBI Holdings. Sygnum Bank of Switzerland and SBI set up a fund for the investment. As far as retail crypto trading goes, Coinhako has the largest customer base and volume in the city-state. The platform offers clients in the region a wide range of regulated crypto asset trading services.
Coinhako is the latest investment in SBI Group’s international expansion strategy. Through its international network, SBI Group will support Coinhako’s global business growth. The fund will invest in startups in the global crypto ecosystem, according to SBI.