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Italy's Consob approves Credit Agricole's offer for Creval

March 22 (Reuters) - The all-cash offer for Creval by the Italian arm of Credit Agricole announced in November has received a green light from banking supervisors and also the Italian government, which has the right to block unwanted bids in strategic industries such as banking, telecoms and health.

Credit Agricole is offering 10.50 euros a share to buy third-tier lender Creval, for a total investment of 737 million euros, to expand its presence in Italy, its second biggest market.

Shares in Creval have been trading consistently above the offer price since, in a sign the market is betting on Credit Agricole improving its offer.

Creval was awaiting the publication of the offer’s official prospectus to give an official opinion on the bid but several of its shareholders have already come out saying the bid is too low.

Reporting by Radhika Anilkumar in Bengaluru and Andrea Mandala in Milan;

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