Russia’s Sberbank has decided to make a fourth attempt to sell its Ukrainian business, Sberbank CEO Herman Gref told Russia 24 in an interview.
“Ukraine is a different story – we have already made three attempts to sell the bank. Now we are going to make a fourth attempt, too. We hope that this time it will be successful,” Interfax cited Gref as saying.
The news agency notes that on May 11, Russia’s Sberbank, as the sole shareholder of PLC Sberbank (Kyiv), decided to increase the subsidiary bank’s authorized capital by a factor of 1.7, to 20.766 billion hryvnia.
In March, the National Bank of Ukraine (NBU) did not permit Paritetbank (Belarus) to purchase PLC Sberbank.
In the autumn of 2017, there were rumors that Sberbank would be acquired by Valeriy Khoroshkovskyi. The businessman, who is currently a resident of Monaco, reached an agreement in principle with Sberbank’s parent company, but had to pull out of negotiations at the end of January 2018, after his lawyers gave their conclusion on the possible risks associated with violating EU sanctions legislation by directly or indirectly purchasing Ukraine’s Sberbank.
In Spring 2017, Sberbank Ukraine had two new potential buyers: Said Gutseriyev, son of the Russian billionaire Mikhail Gutseriyev (Russneft, Neftisa, Binbank), and Grigoriy Guselnikov, primary shareholder of the Latvian Norvik Bank. In this case too, the deal was not approved by the NBU.
The Ukrainian Sberbank belongs to the Russian bank of the same name, which in turn belongs to the Russian government. PLC Sberbank is the largest of the banks with Russian capital in Ukraine, with roughly 40 billion hryvnia in assets.