Nikko Cordial: Mizuho Financial Agrees to Sell Stake to Citigroup

 |  Includes: C, MFG, NIKOY
by: John Bethel

Looks like Citigroup (NYSE:C) has moved a step closer in taking over Nikko Cordial (OTC:NIKOY) with Mizuho Financial (NYSE:MFG) saying it will accept Citi's offer. Mizuho holds a 4.8% stake in Nikko. The linked Bloomberg report states that Nikko's four major shareholders -- Harris Associates, Orbis, Southeastern Asset Management and Mackenzie/Cundill -- still have not publicly commented on Citi's increased bid.

But the official Mizuho statement has things moving in Citigroup's direction:

The offer from Citigroup probably will succeed, said Mana Nakazora, chief credit analyst at JPMorgan Securities Japan Co. in Tokyo. "Overseas funds cannot keep asking for a higher price as Citigroup will just walk away.''

There's always the possibility the four major shareholders -- which own a combined 27% of Nikko -- could just hold on to their stakes. Willing to hold minority stakes as long as they have conviction the shares are undervalued. Note that is not a prediction on my part.

NIKOY 1-yr chart