Santander BanCorp, the San Juan, Puerto Rico, bank whose majority owner is the Spanish bank Banco Santander Central Hispano, has agreed to purchase the Puerto Rican operations of Island Finance, a real estate-secured and consumer lender based in San Juan, from Wells Fargo & Co., San Francisco.Santander will pay $734.5 million in cash for the unit, which had been a part of Wells Fargo Financial, the consumer finance subsidiary of Wells Fargo & Co. Norwest Corp., now part of Wells Fargo, acquired Island Financial from ITT Corp. in May 1995. Wells Fargo is retaining the Island Finance operations in Trinidad & Tobago, Aruba, and the Netherlands Antilles. A new subsidiary, Santander Financial Services Inc., will operate that company's consumer finance and auto loan businesses. The acquired operations will retain the Island Finance brand name. Island Finance is the second-largest consumer lender in Puerto Rico. As of the end of last year, it had $627 million in loan receivables from borrowers on the island.

Subscribe Now

Authoritative analysis and perspective for every segment of the mortgage industry

30-Day Free Trial

Authoritative analysis and perspective for every segment of the mortgage industry