Slovenian regulators approve sale of lender NKBM

By bne IntelliNews March 18, 2016

Slovenian regulators have approved the acquisition of Nova Kreditna banka Maribor (NKBM) by US equity fund Apollo Global Management and the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD), the Slovenian central bank announced on March 17.

In June 2015, Slovenian Sovereign Holding (SSH), Apollo Global Management and the EBRD signed an agreement concerning the sale of  the government's 100% shareholding in NKBM. According to the agreement, Apollo will acquire 80% of the bank, while EBRD purchases the remaining 20%. The investors have also struck a deal to buy the Slovenian subsidiary of Austrian bank Raiffeisen.

Regulatory approval was issued after Apollo submitted additional information regarding Biser Bidco, a company established jointly by Apollo and the EBRD, to carry out the acquisition of NKBM and the Slovenian Raiffeisen subsidiary, Slovenian Press Agency (STA) reported on March 17.

The central bank also requested that it submit a strategic plan for NKBM as a condition for approval of the takeover. After reviewing the additional documents submitted by the buyers, including processes for reviewing financing sources, Banka Slovenija concluded that "legitimate investors, mostly funds" had provided the funds.

Apollo is still awaiting formal completion of NKBM's withdrawal from the Serbian market, after the bank sold its stake in Serbia's KBM banka last month.

NKBM said on February 18 it has signed an agreement on the sale of 546.683 shares, representing a 89.53% stake in its Serbian subsidiary KBM Banka. The deal selling the stake to Serbian businesmen Andrej Jovanovic and Bojan Milovanovic was signed on February 17.

Raiffeisen Bank International sold its Slovenian operations to Biser Bidco, which is managed by an affiliate of Apollo Global Management, for an undisclosed sum, RBI announced in a December 10 press release.

Moody’s Investor Service said on February 10 it has affirmed the long-term deposit ratings of NKBM at B3.

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