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Santander’s takeover of Sovereign Bancorp is a great example of the smart money vs. the dumb money. Santander has had Sovereign in its sights for a long time and had been rebuffed by them. But Santander is now using this crisis as a catalyst to buy up the remainder of Sovereign it doesn’t already own.
Emilio Botín, the head of Santander, has banking in his blood. His family has had control of Santander for four generations. He took over a staid, lazy bank and took it to the top position in Spain. Not content with that, he then started to expand outward. He’s already 71 and after his retirement the family legacy is expected to continue with his daughter, Ana Patricia Botín taking over.
Santander is already one of the world’s largest banks and earlier this year Euromoney named it as the world’s best bank for 2008. It has operations in Europe, as well as in England and Latin America. This new acquisition brings Santander into the US.
Here is Botin schooling the rest of the banking world in his thick Spanish accent on the 3 important principles of banking - the video goes wonky towards the end but the sound is good, so listen up Wall St.!
Keep in mind that the strongest banks in the world are in Canada (as a group).
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