Chase Manhattan Corp. has joined a consortium that is investing $350 million in financial services companies across Latin America.

Chase Capital Partners, the equity investment arm of the bank, will contribute $75 million to the fund, which is expected to eventually total $750 million.

Other partners include Infisa S.A., a Chilean financial services company; Blackstone Capital Partners II Merchant Banking Fund LP; Hicks, Muse, Tate & Furst Inc.; and National Bank of Canada.

In a statement last week Chase said the goal of the partnership is to establish the first Latin America-wide financial institution. The group will make its first aquisitions in Banco Concepcion of Chile and Banco Consolidado of Venezuela.

Jeffrey Walker, managing partner at Chase Capital, said Chase's participation in the venture underscored the bank's "belief in Latin America's continued growth and reform and our commitment to substantially increase investments in the region."

Chase currently has some $4 billion in investments under management in the United States, Europe, Asia, and Latin America.

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