France’s Auchan hypermarket chain is setting up a joint bank with the Dutch Credit Europe Group in Russia to handle its growing business in the country, Russian Credit Europe Bank said on Monday. The Dutch Group is setting up the bank with France’s Oney Banque Accord, part of Auchan Group, which owns the hypermarket chain in Russia. “Oney Banque Accord with its headquarters in France and Credit Europe Group with its main office in the Netherlands have set down to implementing the first stage of the process of registering a joint bank in Russia by filing a corresponding request to the regulator and submitting a business plan for discussion,” the bank said in a statement. The parties aim to create and manage a joint universal bank offering a full range of financial products to customers and partners of Oney Banque Accord in Russia, including Auchan, Leroy Merlin and Decathlon retail networks, the bank said. The new bank is expected to start operations in 2013. Kommersant business daily reported in April that Auchan was considering setting up its own bank in Russia to handle its growing business in the country and offer credit to its customers without intermediaries, \"Auchan has reached a serious level of development in Russia as there is a considerable turnover of cash and non-cash payments in the chain. It would be a reasonable decision if the group consolidates all its cash flows in its own bank,\" NEO Centre Consulting Group\'s head of bank consulting, Yevgeny Trusov, was quoted as saying.