Just weeks after being embroiled in the collapse of broker Opes Prime, ANZ has reached an in-principle agreement to lend embattled broker Chimaera Capital $55 million.
Chimaera is raising $65 million to provide the business with additional liquidity and fund further expansion. ANZ wants to take a majority stake in the group and Chimaera says it will invite ANZ to appoint directors to its board. Chimaera founder, Ian Pattison, said in a statement: “Chimaera has enjoyed a long-standing relationship with ANZ since its formation and we are looking forward to working even more closely with ANZ in the future.”
Chimeara has been at pains to point out it is a private merchant bank, rather than a stock lending business like collapsed brokers Opes Prime and Lift Capital. It expects to complete its equity raising in the next 30 days.
Speaking at the release of ANZ’s interim results yesterday – a 14% drop in cash profit to $1.67 billion – the bank’s chief Mike Smith admitted he was very annoyed about the reputational damage the Opes debacle had caused. “I have to say I am somewhat pissed off about the whole thing,” Smith told analysts.
ANZ’s investigation into the Opes debacle is continuing, but there is no doubt Smith and his team will be keeping a very close eye on Chimaera to ensure its problems do not get worse.