MANILA – Ayala-led Bank of the Philippine Islands (BPI) on Monday denied a news report that it is in talks to acquire a majority stake in the Yunchengco-led Rizal Commercial Banking Corp. (RCBC).
In a statement, BPI said it “is not in talks or discussion with RCBC regarding the acquisition of a majority stake in the latter.”
“Information in the aforementioned news item is purely speculative. BPI does not comment on articles on such nature,” it added.
On Monday, a story published in a major daily, The Philippine Star, quoted sources as saying that BPI was considering to purchase majority stakes in RCBC, which is now in the middle of controversy after USD 81 million stolen from the account of Bangladesh Bank with the Federal Reserve of New York ended at RCBC’s Jupiter-Makati branch in February 2016.
The heist is now under investigation of the Philippines’ Anti-Money Laundering Council (AMLC), which has filed money laundering cases against Jupiter Makati branch Manager Maia Santos-Deguito and several others.
RCBC has also filed charges against Deguito and senior customer relation officer Angela Torres for falsification of commercial documents after they allegedly opened accounts for businessman William Go without this knowledge. The alleged Go account is where the stolen money was consolidated.