Consumer loan provider Cetelem is reportedly in talks to acquire Zuno, Raiffeisen Bank International's (RBI) Czech and Slovak internet banking unit, unnamed sources claimed on April 24.
Point of sale credit company Cetelem, owned by French giant BNP Paribas, is already in advanced negotiations for the loss making unit with the Austrian bank, the sources told E15.cz. However, neither would comment on the information.
RBI presented potential suitors with an offer of a 100% stake in Zuno in the middle of January. The Austrians said in February that they had received more than 20 bids, but refused to give further details.
Media reports have indicated that Erste was mulling a bid. Slovak millionaire Pavol Krupa, owner of investment group Arca Capital, is also said to be interested.
Slovakia was the first country in which Zuno launched in December 2010, and it has around 140,000 clients in the country. It entered the Czech market in 2011, where it has some 90,000 clients. Zuno is reported to have posted consistently large annual losses since it was established.
Cetelem’s lending portfolio rose 8% to CZK12bn (€437.1mn) in the Czech Republic last year. It has a market share of 34% in the country.
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