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Japan M&A Firm GCA to buy US Peer Savvian

Japan's GCA Holdings, a mergers and acquisitions advisory firm, said on Thursday it will buy U.S. peer Savvian in a stock swap deal worth $780 million, seeking a bigger slice of growing cross-border deals.

GCA's shares rocketed 12 percent higher in early trade to 662,000 yen.

"This merger ... is a merger of equals and aims to create a true global investment bank that is neither Japanese nor American," GCA said in statement.

The two firms will set up a new holding company in Japan, GCA Savvian Group, that will replace GCA as the listed entity.

GCA is to hold 55 percent of the company and Savvian, currently privately held, will hold 45 percent.

GCA said it hopes to turn around its current ratio of deals -- 70 percent domestic transactions to 30 percent overseas with the merger.

"In three years time, we hope to make that a ratio of 70 percent overseas transactions to 30 percent domestic transactions."

Savvian is a privately held firm based in San Francisco that provides advisory services for mergers and initial public offerings.

Under the deal, GCA and Savvian shareholders will each swap one of their shares for a share in the holding firm. The holding company will issue 336,219 common shares, of which 151,299, or 45 percent will be allotted to Savvian shareholders.

At GCA's closing price of 594,000 yen on Wednesday, the value of the deal is around 90 billion yen ($780 million).