Italian Bank Reaches Agreement To Buy 86.4 Percent Of Ukrsotsbank

ROME, Italy -- Italian bank Banca Intesa has reached an agreement with the controlling shareholder of Ukraine's Ukrsotsbank to buy an 85.42 percent stake of the bank, Intesa said Tuesday.

Banca Intesa has expressed hope that the move will help it play a major role in central and eastern European banking.

Following the completion of a pending capital increase worth $US60 million (about -50 million), Intesa will increase its stake to 88.1 percent, the Italian bank said in a statement.

Banca Intesa is Italy's second-largest by market capitalization.

Ukrsotsbank is Ukraine's fourth largest bank, with a network of 527 branches and more than 660,000 customers.

Banca Intesa said that it values the Ukrainian bank at US$1.3 billion (-1.09 billion) and that its total investment would amount to US$1.61 million, including the share capital increase.

Intesa is already present in the region, controlling Privredna Banka Zagreb d.d, Croatia's second largest bank, and Vseobecna uverova banka, Slovakia second-largest bank.

It also owns Banca Intesa Beograd, formerly known as Delta Banka, Serbia and Montenegro's second-largest bank, and Hungary's fourth-largest bank Central-European International Bank.

Source: AP