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Dec 19, 2007 16:39 EEST
December 19 (SeeNews) - Slovenia's biggest bank by assets Nova Ljubljanska Banka (NLB) said on Wednesday it has bought 25.1% of NLB Kasabank, the third-largest bank in the U.N.-run Serbian province of Kosovo, for 8.296 million euro ($12 million), raising its stake in the bank to 75.25%.
NLB has bought 6,215 shares of NLB Kasabank at a price of 1,334.76 euro per share, it said in a statement.
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Kasabank, set up in 2002, had total assets of 128.6 million euro at the end of 2006 and a market share of 12.3%.
Earlier this year NLB bought 77.75% of New Bank of Kosovo, the fourth-largest bank in the province.
Legally still part of Serbia, Kosovo has been under U.N. administration since 1999, when NATO bombs drove out Serb forces amid inter-ethnic fighting. Serbs oppose any form of independence for the province, while Kosovo's ethnic Albanian majority insists on it.
The NLB Group comprises 63 units operating on 18 markets, including 16 banks, 11 leasing companies, 11 financial companies and five insurers. The Slovenian government owns 35.41% of NLB and Belgian banking group KBC has 34%. The remainder is owned by a large number of minority shareholders.
($ = 0.68 euro)
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