Report: OTP in talks to take over NKBM for EUR 1bn

Ljubljana – The Hungarian bank OTP is in talks with the private equity fund Apollo to take over Slovenia’s NKBM bank in a deal worth nearly EUR 1 billion, the press agency Reuters has reported, citing sources close to the matter. Both NKBM and Apollo, which owns 80% of the bank, declined to comment.

OTP acquired SKB Bank in Slovenia in 2019, with its CEO Sandor Csanyi telling the press in early 2020 that OTP wanted to acquire a 25-30% share of the Slovenian market.

If the takeover of NKBM takes place, OTP will hold 29% of the banking market in Slovenia, surpassing NLB, the market leader with a 23% share.

Reuters said in its report on Wednesday the sale could value NKBM at roughly book value, citing one of the sources, speaking on condition of anonymity. Moreover, sources for Reuters said that talks were ongoing and that no final decision had been taken.

Like Apollo and NKBM, NKBM’s 20% owner European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD) would also not comment on the matter for Reuters.

On Wednesday, the business newspaper Finance reported that OTP was carrying out a due diligence at NKBM.

Before taking over SKB Bank, OTP tried to buy NKBM and Abanka, which have recently been merged after Apollo took over Abanka last year.

Employing some 1,400 people, NKBM posted a net profit of EUR 208.9 million last year, while group net profit reached EUR 210.8 million.

Its return on capital after tax was at 21.59% at the end of 2020 at the group level and at 21.42% at the core company level.