Eurobank buys Greece's postal bank
- Published: 14/07/2013 at 01:49 AM
- Online news:
Eurobank, one of Greece's biggest lenders, on Saturday acquired the country's postal bank, one day after purchasing Proton Bank, the Greek financial stability fund said.
A man walks past a Eurobank's branch in central Athens on April 8, 2013. Eurobank, one of Greece's biggest lenders, on Saturday acquired the country's postal bank, one day after purchasing Proton Bank, the Greek financial stability fund said.
"The Hellenic financial stability fund (HFSF) completed the competitive tender process for the sale of the Hellenic Postbank and decided to proceed with its sale to Eurobank," the fund said in a statement.
On Friday, Eurobank announced that the HFSF had approved its purchase of Proton Bank and that the final agreement was set to be signed on Monday.
The postal bank's sale will also be finalised on Monday, HFSF has said.
Protesting against the expected sale, the Hellenic Postbank's employees staged a strike on Friday.
An earlier attempt to privatise the postal bank back in January had flopped, because of a lack of interest in bidding.
The postal bank's shares were suspended last August after a run by shareholders following statements from the finance minister that the bank had become "unsustainable".
All four of Greece's main lenders -- National Bank (NBG), Piraeus, Alpha and Eurobank -- underwent a process of recapitalisation, as part of the terms included in the country's EU-IMF bailout deal.
Except for Eurobank, all other main lenders have said they have been successful in raising a tenth of their capital requirements from private investors, a necessary condition to avoid effective nationalisation.
Eurobank in June confirmed a full state recapitalisation, with the HFSF originally acquiring 98.56 percent of Eurobank's ordinary shares with voting rights, a percentage that dropped to 93.55 percent earlier this month.
At the end of May, the bank had announced a net profit of 375 million euros ($490 million) for the first quarter of 2013, attributed to its full state recapitalisation.
In the first quarter of 2012, Eurobank had marked losses of 236 million euros.
A sum of 50 billion euros from Greece's EU-IMF rescue loans has been earmarked for the banks' recapitalisation.
Greek banks suffered heavy losses after their participation in a writedown of the value of Greek government bonds last year.
About the author
- Writer: AFP
Position: News agency