The planned purchase of Spain’s Banco Zaragozano by Barclays Bank has been heralded as a key move in the Bank’s attempts to extend its franchise in the market. Moody’s rating agency described the move as positive while Standard & Poor’s have affirmed their positive rating as a consequence. According to Moody’s, Barclays already has a successful, if limited, franchise in Spain and the planned acquisition of Zaragozano is likely to double the bank’s balance sheet and revenues in the market. Furthermore, Moody’s explained the acquisition offers Barclays the opportunity to strengthen its franchise in Spain, since its existing franchise is focused on the larger cities and on wealthier clients, whereas Zaragozano has a more widely spread geographic presence and a wider customer base. Commenting on the deal Peter Dutton, credit analyst at Standard & Poor’s said: ‘Combining the existing business (in its subsidiary, Barclays Bank SA) with Zaragozano would triple the group’s customer base there, and create the country’s sixth-largest private sector banking group.’
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