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25 April, 2024
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Greek government to sell its stake in Piraeus Bank, anticipates high demand

Greek government plans full divestment, citing positive conditions and bank profit projections

Kathimerini Greece Newsroom

Greece will proceed with the complete divestment of the state from Piraeus Bank with the disposition of the 27% it controls through the Hellenic Financial Stability Fund (HFSF).

The government has come to this decision, according to sources cited by Bloomberg, highlighting the positive investment climate and the high demand manifested during the preparatory procedures, which is capable, as they note, of absorbing all the shares that will be made available.

This outlook is reinforced by the high profitability announced by the bank last week, targeting profits of 1 billion euros per year for the period 2024-2026, which paves the way for the distribution of a dividend equal to 25% of profits in 2024 and of the order of 50% per year in 2025-2026. The public offer will likely start on Monday, March 4, in order for the offer book to be closed within the first week of next month.

The process will provide for the parallel opening of the book for the Greek public, with the allocation of shares to institutional and private investors, a model that was followed in the case of National Bank (NBG) with success.

The decision on the range of the sale price is expected on the weekend before the start of the public offering and, as in the case of NBG, it is assumed that it will provide a discount in relation to the closing price of the stock on Friday, March 1.

The final price will be determined based on demand in the international offer, based on which the final sale price of the shares in the Greek public offer will be locked. It is recalled that the capitalization of Piraeus stands at €4.9 billion and the disposal of 27% could bring revenues to the public of up to €1.3 billion depending on the price at which the book will be closed. The opinion for the complete divestment of the state from Piraeus prevailed in view of the entry into force of the provision brought to Parliament by Minister of Justice Giorgos Floridis in the context of the new Criminal Code and which abolishes the so-called “non-persecution” of bank executives from July 1.

Cyprus  |  Greece  |  banks  |  economy

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