MADRID (Reuters) – Spain’s Unicaja UNI.MC and Liberbank LBK.MC are holding informal talks about a potential tie-up to create the country’s fifth-biggest lender with over 100 billion euros ($117.13 billion) in total assets, a source with knowledge of the matter said.
“Informal talks between the two lenders are taking place,” the source said, adding that it was too early to say if that would lead to formal negotiations.
Both Liberbank and Unicaja declined to comment on the talks.
A source with knowledge of the matter said that Unicaja has not hired any investment bank to look into this potential deal and that no due diligence process was underway.
Both lenders have said in the past they are open to consolidation.
Earlier on Saturday, Bloomberg reported that Unicaja Banco was closer to a long-mooted takeover of Liberbank.
Last month’s all-share deal between Caixabank CABK.MC and Bankia BKIA.MC to create Spain’s biggest