BNP Paribas acquires a 27% interest in the India-based company Geojit and becomes its main shareholder
BNP Paribas enters the capital of Geojit Financial Services Ltd through a preferential allotment representing 27% of Geojit’s equity. The capital increase will take place in two steps and the share of BNP Paribas will increase up to a minimum of 34.35% in the coming few weeks.
Based in Kochi, Kerala, Geojit is a brokerage firm and distributor of financial savings products, with approximately 250,000 clients, a network of 400 branches throughout India, and over 2,000 employees. Geojit also operates in the United Arab Emirates through the joint-venture Barjeel Geojit Securities.
Geojit offers brokerage services for equities, derivatives and commodities, financial savings products (funds, life insurance, programmed savings plans) and a portfolio management service, mainly to private customers.
Created in 1987, Geojit is listed in India on the National Stock Exchange and the Bombay Stock Exchange.
The capital increase allotted to BNP Paribas will mainly allow to finance the continued development of the company in India and to bolster its presence in the Gulf countries, primarily through the opening of a new joint-venture in Saudi Arabia.
The company will use the brand name Geojit BNP Paribas and the common logo of the group’s companies for all its operations in India.
CJ George, age 48, has been the CEO of Geojit since its creation and becomes CEO of Geojit BNP Paribas. He holds a Masters in Business and the Certified Financial Planner (CFP) degree. He was elected Businessman of Kerala in 2002. He is a member of the Executive Board of the Associated Chambers of Commerce and Industry of India, New Delhi (ASSOCHAM), of the Kochi Chamber of Commerce and of the Executive Committee of Financial Planning standard Board of India, Bombay. He also sat on the Executive Board of the National Stock Exchange (NSE).
CJ George joins the Executive Board of BNP Paribas Personal Investors.
A strategic partnership between Geojit and BNP Paribas
Already present in India through its Investment Banking, Private Banking, Insurance (joint-venture SBI Life) and Asset Management (joint-venture Sundaram BNP Paribas, etc.) activities, BNP Paribas will find in Geojit a strong trading and distribution platform in a fast growing market.
To accelerate its growth, Geojit will benefit from the BNP Paribas Group’s experience in savings distribution (investment funds, life insurance), cross-selling, consulting and discretionary management of stocks and investment funds, multi-channel distribution and direct marketing and telesales (Internet and telephone).
A new business line, BNP Paribas Personal Investors, is part of the Asset Management & Services (AMS) division
– Cortal Consors
– its subsidiary, the brokerage firm B*capital
– the interest in Geojit
BNP Paribas Personal Investors is dedicated to providing financial investment advice to a mass-affluent clientele in Europe and several emerging countries through various distribution channels (Internet, telephone and face-to-face). These operations are managed jointly so as to ensure that their identity and operational independence is preserved.
BNP Paribas Personal Investors, with 4,000 members, operates in Europe through Cortal Consors, the leading broker in personal investing and online trading, which offers a complete range
of products and investment services through various distribution channels. Cortal Consors operates in 5 European countries: Germany, France, Belgium, Spain and Luxemburg.
B*capital, a Cortal Consors brokerage firm, offers private investors wishing to manage their own portfolio information and personalized consulting and management under mandate services.
End 2006, assets under management by Cortal Consors and B*capital totalled 33.8 billion euros for 1,166,500 customers. Net Banking Income rose 29% between 2005 and 2006 and operating income reached 68 million euros, a 122% increase to 2005.
The BNP Paribas Personal Investors business has been entrusted to Olivier Le Grand, who remains Chairman of Cortal Consors and B*capital.
Olivier Le Grand, age 54, became Chairman and CEO of Cortal Consors following the merger of Cortal and Consors in 2002. He is a member of the Executive Board of the Asset Management & Services (AMS) division of BNP Paribas. He had joined Cortal in 1987 as Vice-President of Finance, and become CEO in 1989. From 1984 to 1987, he was in charge of planning and controlling of Compagnie Bancaire, a Paribas subsidiary and a holding company. From 1978 to 1984, he was successively in charge of economic studies, electricity consumption forecasts and the investment needs review for Electricité de France. Olivier Le Grand is a graduate of ENSAE, a leading French school of Economics, and has a DEA degree in mathematical methods in economics.