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CaixaBank and Bankia merge paving the way for Spain to create biggest domestic bank worth more than $786 billion

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FILE PHOTO: An Estelada (Catalan separatist flag) is seen on a balcony near a Caixa bank branch in Barcelona, Spain October 6, 2017. REUTERS/Yves Herman/File Photo
FILE PHOTO: An Estelada (Catalan separatist flag) is seen on a balcony near a Caixa bank branch in Barcelona


  • CaixaBank and Bankia received approval from their boards to merge, creating a bank worth more than $786 billion on Friday. 
  • CaixaBank will exchange 0.6845 of its shares for one Bankia share.
  • The new bank will operate under CaixaBank’s brand and will have more 20 million customers.
  • Visit Business Insider’s homepage for more stories.

CaixaBank and Spanish-state owned Bankia said on Friday they had got the greenlight from their boards to merge, creating the country’s largest domestic bank.

The deal will create a bank with assets of more than $786 billion. CaixaBank will exchange 0.6845 of its shares for one share in Bankia.

The operation is expected to close in the first quarter of 2021, as the merger still needs to be approved by both banks’ shareholders, as well as various regulatory and competition authorities. 

 “The combined entity’s total assets will exceed 664 billion euros, a volume that will make it the largest bank in the domestic market, with an important position at a European level and a market capitalization of over 16 billion euros,” the banks said in a joint statement.

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The new bank that will operate under the CaixaBank brand increases the group’s retail banking exposure and will have more than 20 million customers.

“With this operation, we will become the leading Spanish bank at a time when it is more necessary than ever to create entities with a significant size, thus contributing to supporting the needs of families and companies, and to reinforcing the strength of the financial system,” Bankia chairman José Ignacio Goirigolzarri said.

Goirigolzarri will become executive chairman of the combined bank, while CaixaBank CEO Gonzalo Gortázar will become CEO of the newly created entity. 

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“The merger will allow us to face the challenges of the next 10 years with greater scale, financial strength and profitability, resulting in greater value for our shareholders, more opportunities for our employees, better service to our clients and a greater capacity to support Spain’s economic recovery,” Gortázar said.

Banks across Europe are grappling with low interest-rate environment and the impact of COVID-19. 

Bankia is often compared with Lehman Brothers, the US investment bank whose collapse in late 2008 unleashed the financial crisis. Bankia was Spain’s biggest mortgage lender until the euro zone debt crisis in 2012 pulverized the country’s banking sector, triggering a a 22.4 billion euros ($26.6 billion) state bailout.

As of 05:30 am. ET, CaixaBank’s shares were up 0.6% at 2.06 euros ($2.5) and Bankia’s shares were down 2.2% at 1.4 euros ($1.7). 

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Business owner says sign is not racist

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“It’s kind of sad that people go to these extents to read into stuff and twist and turn a question. [It’s] not a racist question. I am not a racist,” Mike told WTRF, adding that he has Black customers and deliverymen. “The racist stuff is just somebody twisting and turning, and it’s ridiculous. Everything right now is very high tension, and this might be some of it, some way that people try to let the steam go.”

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SpaceX is rapidly growing its Internet satellite business

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With an eventual public offering in mind, SpaceX is ramping up its Starlink Internet service, as it’s slated to launch another 60 satellites on Wednesday.

The launch, according to a list from the Federal Aviation Administration, is slated to happen from Cape Canaveral, Fla. It will take place at 12:36 p.m. EDT on the company’s Falcon 9 rocket, according to SpaceflightNow.com.

On Sunday, SpaceX launched another group of 60 satellites, which the Hawthorne, Calif.-based company said will provide “high-speed broadband Internet to locations where access has been unreliable, expensive or completely unavailable.”

MUSK’S SPACEX WINS PENTAGON AWARD FOR MISSING-TRACKING SATELLITES

More than 700 satellites have been launched, according to CNet, which also notes that 60 of the older satellites are in the process of deorbiting

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SpaceX continues to bolster its service ahead of its public launch, scheduled for later this year. On Monday, SpaceX teamed with Microsoft to use its Azure cloud computing service to help connect and deploy new services for its Starlink unit.

The Musk-led company has said it is targeting service in the northern part of the U.S. and Canada this year, but has not given an exact time frame yet.

In the past, SpaceX CEO Elon Musk has said that the company will “probably” take its Starlink Internet business public, but only when it has “predictable” and “smooth” revenue growth.

MICROSOFT TEAMS WITH ELON MUSK’S SPACEX TO PUSH CLOUD BATTLE WITH AMAZON INTO ORBIT

In October 2019, Musk sent a tweet using the Starlink satellite system.

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In April, Musk said there were 420 Starlink satellites in space.

In July, Morgan Stanley said SpaceX could be worth as much as $175 billion if Musk’s Starlink Internet service is successful.

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Kilani Bakery in business 61 years turns to social media to bring in customers

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WAHIAWA, (KHON2) — To survive the pandemic, small businesses have had to adapt to the ever-changing COVID-19 guidelines. Many long-time local businesses have also had to find new creative ways to bring in customers amid the pandemic.

[Hawaii news on the go–LISTEN to KHON 2GO weekday mornings at 7:30 a.m.]

One of those businesses is Kilani Bakery, a Wahiawa gem that has been serving the community for 61 years.

The bakery is old school. It first opened in 1959 on Kilani Avenue in Wahiawa.

“We literally have the best customers, and it’s because of them that we keep going,” said Dawn Takara, the manager of the bakery.

Sidney Takara’s father started the tiny, humble bakery.

“I worked in the bakery washing dishes, doing little things I picked up here and there,” said Sidney Takara about his childhood.

Eventually, the bakery expanded to its current location at 704 Kilani Ave., and Sidney Takara and his brother Jeffrey took over the business.

Dawn Takara said the bakery is hard work.

“My husband and my son, they start at about six in the evening and then they go from there, and then another baker comes in about one o’clock [in the morning],” she explained.

Sidney Takara said working through the night is worth it for his community.

“I meet people at the bank like on a weekend, the teller and is there and says, ‘Oh yeah, I used to go there after high school,’” Sidney Takara said.

Kilani Bakery is known for its irresistible brownies that often sell out.

“It’s a little chewy. We have nuts in it,” Dawn Takara explained about the brownies. “[Customers] call it crack brownies,” she said.

However, the pandemic has been a difficult time for many businesses.

Sales at the bakery are down, so Kilani Bakery has come up with new ways to get customers.

“We’re very old school. We don’t like social media, but we’ve turned to social media to put ourselves out there and to do some advertising,” Dawn Takara explained.

On top of COVID-19, it doesn’t help that there is construction daily along Kilani Avenue.

The Takara’s said the construction deters many customers from going to the bakery.

However, for those who do want to support the long-time local business, there is plenty of parking available.

Because of COVID-19, the Takara’s said it is no longer about making money. It is simply about surviving for their customers.

“They follow us to the end,” Dawn Takara said about their loyal customers. “They threaten us if we ever even think of shutting down,” she said.

Dawn Takara said they also hope to stay in business for years to come, so their kids can one day take over.

“I always tell my kids, you have to love what you do,” Dawn Takara stated.

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