Sandler O’Neill CEO sees more aggressive foreign buyers

November 5, 2007

jimmy.jpgJames Dunne, chief executive of Sandler O’Neill, a boutique brokerage which specializes in advising banks and other financial services companies on mergers and takeovers, expects foreign buyers to become increasingly active players in financial institutions M&A in the U.S. He says they will be drawn by the weakness of the U.S. dollar and as many domestic players retreat from making takeovers amid the current credit markets turbulence.

European and Canadian banks are already leading the takeover wave as shown by Royal Bank of Canada’s recent deal to buy Alabama National BanCorporation and Toronto-Dominion Bank’s planned takeover of Commerce Bancorp.  

On the European side, Dunne pointed to Madrid-based BBVA’s recently closed $9.1 billion takeover of Compass Bancshares, BBVA’s biggest-ever investment. Compass was advised on that deal by none other than Sandler O’Neill. 

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