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Aozora Bank, partners start preparations for online bank opening

Aozora BankLtd. and its partners started preparations for the proposedjoint ventureinternet bank, including appointing officers to Aozora Trust Bank Ltd. underwhich the internet bank will be operated.

The bank said July 21 that it established an internet bankproject launch office within Aozora Trust Bank. Masaya Onagi was appointed directorand chairman, while Shinji Murabe was appointed director and general manager ofthe launch office. Hideto Oomi and Akio Sato were named part-time directors.

All the appointments took effect June 29.

Aozora Bank and GMO Internet Inc. alsoannounced a new alliance under which GMO CLICK Holdings Inc. acquired half ofAozora Trust Bank common shares held by GMO Internet. As part of the , GMOInternet acquired the shares from Aozora Trust's ¥6.6 billion capital increaseon June 29. In addition to common shares, Aozora Trust Bank also issued class Aand class B shares.

The agreement requires the transfer to GMO Internet or GMOCLICK of all class shares on either the date on which the companies obtainnecessary approval to become shareholders of Aozora Trust Bank, or five yearsfrom the official launch date of the internet bank. Subject to approval, thecompanies may convert any class shares to common shares.

Following the new alliance, Aozora Bank will own 85.1%voting rights at Aozora Trust Bank, while each of GMO Internet and GMO CLICKwill own 7.45% voting rights. Aozora Bank's voting rights will be reduced to50% after the GMO companies acquire class shares and convert them to commonshares of Aozora Trust Bank.

The new internet bank is expected to begin operations duringfiscal 2017.

As of July 21, US$1was equivalent to ¥106.33.