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Taiwan’s Chailease acquires 60 pct of Cellcard Finance

Taiwan’s Chailease acquires 60 pct of Cellcard Finance

Taiwanese financial firm Chailease Holding announced on Thursday that it has inked a deal to acquire a 60 per cent stake in the Royal Group-owned microfinance firm Cellcard Finance, according to the Taipei Times.

In a report released late on Sunday, it said the agreement would allow Chailese Holding greater access to the Kingdom to take advantage of the country’s fast-growing business needs.

“The move came as we seek to boost our presence in Asean markets,” Chailease Holding chairman Albert Chen said in the report.

Cellcard Finance would be renamed Chailese Royal Finance Plc after Cambodian regulators give the green light. The National Bank of Cambodia (NBC) could not be reached for comments on Monday.

Although the value of the deal was not stated in the release, an NBC supervisory report said Cellcard Finance held $571,400 in total assets at the end of last year.

The firm, a subsidiary of Royal Group, was granted a microfinance operating licence in June 2015 by the NBC.

Reached yesterday, Cellcard Finance CEO Kevin Lim said he knew there were discussions on the acquisition, but he was unaware of details on how the deal was progressing.

Contacted on Monday, Royal Group senior vice-president Rami Sharaf said he was not authorised to answer any questions regarding the deal.

Chailese Holding and Royal Group previously set up Chailease Royal Leasing Plc, which began in February last year to provide leasing and other financial services for Cambodian vehicles, machinery equipment and construction tools.

Consolidations and acquisitions within Cambodia’s microfinance sector have been increasing over the past two years.

Industry experts have said the reason behind that is mainly due to market competition and tougher requirements from the Kingdom’s central bank – in the form of larger minimum capital requirements.

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