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Business

DBS banks on ANZ for credit card growth in Taiwan

DBS Chief Executive Piyush Gupta, left, and Jerry Chen, general manager of DBS Taiwan, vow to grow the bank's Taiwan business.

TAIPEI -- DBS Group Holdings is hoping that ANZ's credit card customer base in Taiwan can boost its profitability after the Singaporean bank says it will acquire some businesses owned by the Australia-based entity.

DBS's proposed takeover of ANZ's retail and wealth management businesses in Singapore, Hong Kong, China, Taiwan and Indonesia, announced on Oct. 31, appears to be a move to tap into regional wealth for growth at a time that its home market is struggling with a weakening economy and sluggish exports.

"Our hope is that the ANZ acquisition would allow us to improve profitability and returns of the Taiwan business, so it can get to the group average," DBS Chief Executive Piyush Gupta told reporters in Taipei. "We should get there in the next 2-3 years."

Jerry Chen, general manager of DBS Taiwan, said: "It is very exciting for us that we are getting 500,000 credit card customers [from ANZ]." Chen added that DBS had fewer than 20,000 credit cards in Taiwan, mostly held by their wealth management customers.

Chen said DBS wanted to offer better services to credit card customers by using big data analytics.

DBS will pay 110 million Singapore dollars ($79 million) plus the book value of the ANZ operations, which includes S$17 billion in deposits and S$11 billion in loans. The transaction is expected to be completed in early 2018.

Due to Singapore's slowing economic growth, DBS's net profit for the July-September quarter stood at S$1.07 billion, almost unchanged from the S$1.06 billion posted for the corresponding period last year.

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