Sociate Generale is Leaving Bulgaria
The French Societe Generale Banking Group is withdrawing from all countries in Central and Eastern Europe and is also selling its business in Bulgaria - Societe Generale Expressbank, Capital reported.
According to sources, Hungary's OTP Bank, which owns DSK Bank, is conducting a survey of the French institution. The initial plan was for direct negotiation between the two, but according to two sources of Capital, another interest appeared - at the end of February an indicative offer for the package was filed by a fund of the American affiliate Apollo Global Management. But at least at this stage the price offered is low. Apollo also said they would not comment.
In recent years, the fund has been actively overseeing the region, and in Bulgaria it has been among candidates for UBB, it is believed to have wanted to buy both Fibank and Piraeus Bank.
The bank in Bulgaria is sold in a package with five other divisions of the French group - in Albania, Macedonia, Montenegro, Serbia and Moldova. All of them are well-run and profitable, but they also suffer from similar shortcomings - small markets where the formerly enticingly high profitability is melting and the environment is saturated and at the same time unstable from a political and regulatory point of view.
Therefore, came Societe Generale's decision to withdraw from the Eastern European region from the non-strategic markets where it is not in the top 3 of market share.