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In Play Today — Abanca nearing Liberbank bid; Amundi eyeing Deutsche unit

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 the location of a target's headquarters, is based on information obtained by S&P Global Market Intelligence and may not be inclusive of all potential deal activity.


* Abanca Corporación Bancaria SA is close to making a bid for rival Spanish lender Liberbank SA, according to financial website Bolsamania.

* French asset manager Amundi SA said it would consider a merger with Deutsche Bank AG's German asset management unit DWS Group GmbH & Co. KGaA only if it can acquire a controlling stake in the company, an insider told Reuters.

* U.S.-based MetLife Inc. is in early talks to sell its central European assets to Italian insurer Generali, insiders told Bloomberg News. The business being discussed could be worth more than €2 billion, and operates mostly in Poland, the Czech Republic, Hungary and Romania.

* CVC Capital Partners Ltd. is in discussions with rival buyout firms, including Centerbridge Partners LP, Warburg Pincus LLC and Apax Partners LLP, about a sale of its subsidiary, U.K.-based warranty provider Domestic & General Group Ltd., for £1.25 billion, insiders told Sky News.

* Ireland-based Goodbody Stockbrokers and its majority owner, Irish financial services firm Fexco Holdings Ltd., are in early-stage discussions with several potential buyers that could lead to a partial or full takeover of Goodbody, insiders told The Irish Times. Swedish lender Svenska Handelsbanken AB (publ), which is said to be considering acquisitions in Ireland's wealth management market, could reportedly be among the potential buyers.

* Italian state lender Cassa depositi e prestiti SpA is planning to increase its stake in Italian payments provider SIA SpA to about 83% by buying stakes from other shareholders, namely UniCredit SpA, Intesa Sanpaolo SpA, Italian infrastructure fund F2i and private equity firm HAT Orizzonte Sgr, Reuters reported.

* VTB Bank PJSC plans to sell its 50.1% stake in Angolan unit Banco VTB Africa SA, Reuters reported, citing the Russian lender.

* U.S.-based Mastercard Inc. is set to join Polski Standard Platnosci Sp. z o.o, which operates Poland's mobile payment system Blik, as a new shareholder, with the transaction expected to be completed by the end of June, insiders told Rzeczpospolita. The deal reportedly values Polski Standard Płatności at about 500 million Polish zlotys.

* Italian bank Intesa Sanpaolo is discussing a potential sale of up to 50% of a €10 billion unlikely-to-pay loan portfolio with debt recovery firm Prelios SpA, insiders told Reuters.


* Bank of Kigali CFO Nathalie Mpaka said the lender is in discussions to acquire Rwanda-based property and casualty insurer Sonarwa S.A., Reuters reported.

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