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Sberbank completes Volksbank buy

Sberbank has completed its deal to buy Volksbank International AG, outlaying between €585 – €645 million, depending on VBI’s 2011 business performance, in a key expansion move.

Concluding a negotiation process that has lasted since last December Sergey Gorkov, deputy head of board of the Russian Credit Organization told journalists Sberbank finally fixed a price on buying VBI, with Sberbank hailing the move as its first key purchase outside the CIS.

Sberbank CEO and Chairman, Herman Gref, speaking inVienna, hailed the move as dovetailing nicely with the expansion plans ofRussia’s largest and oldest bank, stating “The acquisition of Volksbank International is an important milestone in delivering on Sberbank’s 2014 strategy.”

Gref added that the move would see Sberbank become a considerably more significant player in Central andEastern Europe.

The deal was actually signed between Sberbank of Russia and the shareholders of Volksbank International AG (VBI) – Österreichische Volksbanken-AG (“VBAG”), BPCES.A.(“BPCE”), DZ BANK AG (“DZ BANK”) and WGZ BANK AG (“WGZ BANK”), with Gerald Wenzel, the CEO of VBAG saying Sberbank was a perfect match for VBI.

Sberbank is buying 100% of VBI, except the bank’s Romanian division. VBI’s subsidiaries are within the top 10 financial institutions inBosnia and Herzegovina,Croatia,CzechRepublic, andSlovakia, and within the top 15 financial institutions inHungary,SerbiaandSlovenia. It also has a presence inUkraineand a banking license inAustria. VBI’s total assets excludingRomaniareached €9.4 bln as at June 30th, 2011.

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