Sberbank walks on the Ukrainian rake

The Russian state bank is trying to sell its business in Ukraine. They are interested in local oligarchs and British.
Chances of Sberbank to sell a subsidiary bank in Ukraine remain, despite the pessimism of the National Bank of Ukraine (NBU). According to "Kommersant", there were three new potential buyers, including two Ukrainian billionaires and the British investment fund. All of them have already sent the seller a proposal, but have not yet filed documents with the NBU. This time the chances of getting approval of the Ukrainian regulator are higher, since the buyers are not connected with the Russian business.

About the fact that the Ukrainian Sberbank is interested in three new customers, told Kommersant source familiar with the negotiations. According to him, Sberbank about four weeks ago turned to all potential interest. Proposals were sent by the owner of the DCH group Alexander Yaroslavsky, owner of the investment-consulting group EastOne Viktor Pinchuk and a certain British investment fund. The interlocutor of "Kommersant" did not specify which of them made the best offer, but expressed confidence that now the chances to sell Ukrainian Sberbank are high, since the new configuration does not involve the participation in the transaction of the son of RussNeft owner Mikhail Gutseriev Said.

Together in the press service of the Savings Bank claim that the information "b" is not true. However, on May 23, the head of the bank German Gref, on the air of the Rossiya 24 television channel, specified that the bank made three attempts to sell the Ukrainian business and added: "Now we will make the fourth attempt. Let's hope that this time it will be successful. "

Sberbank began trying to sell business in Ukraine Sberbank after Kiev imposed sanctions against the "daughters" of Russian state-owned banks in the spring of 2017. In December 2017, the former head of the NBU, Sergei Tigipko, purchased the ViE-bank from the group. But the Ukrainian JSC "Sberbank" has not been able to sell for two years. Alexander Yaroslavsky already negotiated with the Russian bank, but they were unsuccessful (see "Kommersant" on May 18, 2016). Later, Belarusian businessman Viktor Prokopenya showed interest in buying, which wanted to buy Paritetbank, owned by Belarus, and through him - Ukrainian Sberbank. However, he failed to realize a deal to buy Paritetbank. Said Gutseriev together with businessman Grigory Guselnikov also submitted documents for the acquisition of the bank, but the NBU rejected this application. Later on the Ukrainian Savings Bank claimed Paritetbank, but the NBU refused to him.

The press service of the National Bank of Ukraine reported that the Ukrainian regulator has not received any documents from anyone for the approval of the transaction. Earlier last week, the deputy chairman of the NBU board, Ekaterina Rozhkova, said that the regulator does not know who could buy such large banks as Sberbank or Prominvestbank (Ukrainian subsidiary of Vnesheconombank). Therefore, according to the NBU, the curtailment of activities is the "only civilized way" for these banks. This way, the "daughters" of VTB-BM-bank, who decided to abandon the banking license, and VTB-Bank, which is actively winding down its business, have already gone.

Alexander Yaroslavsky already showed interest in other Russian banks. In late 2017, he intended to buy Prominvestbank, but he did not submit all the documents to the NBU and was refused. The interlocutor of Kommersant from the closest associate of Mr. Yaroslavsky confirmed the businessman's interest in buying Ukrainian Sberbank. According to him, Alexander Yaroslavsky "agreed position with the NBU", but allegedly this transaction is blocked by the deputies of the Verkhovna Rada Pavel Fuchs and Maxim Mikitas (these deputies also claimed to buy Prominvestbank, acting as rivals of Mr. Yaroslavsky). A source close to Viktor Pinchuk's structures assures that he does not prepare a deal to acquire the Ukrainian Sberbank.

Head of the analytical department of Concorde Capital Alexander Parashny believes that Mr. Yaroslavsky is a very realistic candidate. Concerning Victor Pinchuk, the expert expresses doubts. He already has a bank, and "not very prosperous," explained Mr. Paraschy, as well as "unresolved debt issues".