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Serbia to buy 34.6% of Komercijalna Banka from EBRD, IFC

Author Radomir Ralev
Serbia to buy 34.6% of Komercijalna Banka from EBRD, IFC Author: Komercijalna Banka. License: All rights reserved.

BELGRADE (Serbia), September 6 (SeeNews) – Serbia has reached an agreement to buy 34.58% of the ordinary shares in Komercijalna Banka [BEL:KMBN] held by the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD) and IFC Capitalization Fund, EBRD said.

Following completion of the transaction, Serbia's government will own 83.23% of the ordinary shares of Komercijalna Banka which it will be able to offer for sale under the ongoing process for privatisation of the bank, EBRD said in a statement on Thursday.

The transaction follows the acquisition by the Serbian government of 6.89% of Komercijalna's ordinary shares from Swedfund and DEG which was completed on June 26. 

In June, Serbia's finance ministry said it received six valid expressions of interest for the purchase of Komercijalna Banka and invited qualified investors to take part in the next stage of the tendering process. The finance ministry had invited expressions of interest for the purchase of at least 50.1% shareholding interest in Komercijalna Banka, including the entire state-owned stake, which stood at 41.75% at the time.

In August, Serbia extended the deadline for submitting non-bindings bids in the tender for the sale of Komercijalna Banka to September 6, with the received non-binding bids to be opened on September 10.

"The Republic of Serbia, EBRD and IFC Capitalization Fund are confident that the Bank is well positioned to achieve a successful privatization," EBRD said.

Shares in Komercijalna closed flat at 3,129 dinars on the Belgrade Stock Exchange on Thursday.

Blue-chip Komercijalna Banka was the third-largest lender in Serbia in terms of assets at the end of 2018, behind Banca Intesa and UniCredit Bank Srbija, according to Serbian central bank figures.