T-Online Enters Venture With Commerzbank
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The strategic move comes a few days after Spain's Banco Bilbao Vizcaya Argentaria announced it was going to develop Internet projects with Telefonica.
"With T-Online we can strengthen our authority in Internet banking crucially," said Dr. Norbert Kaesbeck, a member of Commerzbank's executive committee.
"Both the customers of Commerzbank and Comdirect will noticeably profit from it. It is our avowed common target to make co-operation an immediate success for all involved parties," said Kaesbeck.
The participation of Comdirect will similarly increase the value of T-Online internationally. Comdirect is the leading European online broker with 306,000 clients, a figure that is expected to rise to half a million by the end of this year.
T-Online is planning an IPO in April which will greatly expand its value, estimated by some analysts as high as 30 billion euros (nearly $30 billion). With such a valuation, Comdirect may end up owning a relatively small percentage stake in the ISP.
The news cheered the stock market, with shares in both Commerzbank and Deutsche Telekom making significant gains.