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Potential deal activity in the EMEA financial sector through Dec. 16

S&P Global Market Intelligence presents In Play Today, a periodic summary of potential deal activity in the financial sectors of Europe, the Middle East and Africa. This summary, which is displayed according to where a target's headquarters is located, is based on information obtained by S&P Global Market Intelligence and may not be inclusive of all potential deal activity.


* Allianz Group is said to be in discussions with Generali regarding the latter's French operations. A potential deal would add more than €11 billion in premiums to the German insurer's business in France, although sources noted that Allianz executives are not sure if a merger would receive regulatory approval.

* Royal Bank of Scotland Group Plc is now reportedly looking to sell a smaller portion of its Williams & Glyn business, after receiving no interest for the entire operations. The U.K. government has asked the European Union to approve this change of plan. RBS is also weighing other alternatives, including shutting down the unit.

* Banca Popolare dell'Emilia Romagna SC and Crédit Agricole Cariparma SpA have reportedly denied interest in buying the good bank carved out of failed Italian bank CARIFE SpA.

* China Minsheng Financial Holding is reportedly looking to acquire a majority stake in Novo Banco SA before launching an IPO for the rest. The Chinese investor is competing against U.S. private equity funds Apollo Global Management LLC and Centerbridge Partners LP and private equity firm Lone Star Funds for the Portuguese bank. Portuguese lenders Millennium BCP and Banco BPI SA are said to be in the race still, although less interested than the other bidders.

* PAO AK Bars Bank denied media reports suggesting that it may merge with PJSC Tatfondbank.

* Bank of Ireland is reportedly in advanced talks to purchase Dublin-based Covestone Asset Management, excluding its private equity and property investments business. Covestone, which has more than €100 million in AUM, is expected to be absorbed into Bank of Ireland's private banking business if a deal goes through.

* EFG International AG is planning to sell its U.K. independent financial advisers business.

* KBC Group NV and OTP Bank Nyrt. have both reportedly submitted offers for National Bank of Greece SA's Bulgarian unit, United Bulgarian Bank AD. A potential deal with either of the banks is likely to be agreed by the end of 2016.

* The Belgian government is reportedly edging toward a decision about the future of Ethias SA, with a potential sale of the troubled state-owned insurer to Belfius Banque SA looking increasingly likely.

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