CNN reports that Marc Bue, the Chairman of Credit Agricole, has resigned after a series of blunders that saw French rival BNP Paribas winning the recent auction for the French government's 10.9% stake in Credit Lyonnais.
Credit Agricole seemed to have Lyonnias exactly where is wanted it. The two French banks were known to have been in exclusive merger talks for months and Agricole was regarded as the French government's preferred choice as the Lyonnais merger partner.
But the government finally lost patience, Agricole would not come up with enough cash and BNP have seemingly walked away with the prize. BNP purchased another 5.3% of Lyonnais earlier this week, taking its stake up to around 16%.
Bue will be replaced by Rene Carron, who has indicated that there still might be a fight for Credit Lyonnais. It is difficult to see, however, just how Credit Agricole can recover from such a shakey start and win any battle for Lyonnais now.