The French consulting company Lazard will be the consultant in the selection of a strategic partner for Komercijalna Banka and the pertinent agreement will be signed with the Ministry of Finance of Serbia on Wednesday, February 6, the ministry told Beta today.
Lazard was also the consultant in the selection of the concessionaire for the Belgrade Nikola Tesla Airport, the French company Vinci Airports. It also advised Telekom Srbija during the unsuccessful privatization process in 2015, when the Government of Serbia found the offers unsatisfactory.
In October 2018, the Ministry of Finance invited the leading international companies to send statements of interest for the provision of financial consulting services for the preparation and execution of the plan of the sale of Komercijalna Banka shares owned by the Republic of Serbia.
The consultant is expected to perform a detailed analysis of the current state of the market, different privatization models and the competition and to then propose the best possible strategy and the manner of sale of the state-owned shares of Komercijalna Banka, to the end of choosing a reliable partner and maximizing the effects of the sale of the capital.
The state owns 41.74% of Komercijalna Banka`s shares, the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD) owns 24.43% of the capital and the IFC Fund owns 10.15%.
The EBRD entered the ownership structure of Komercijalna Banka in 2006 with a capital increase of EUR 70 million, and the privatization was planned for 2009, but the economic crisis stopped the sale. After that, the EBRD made another capital increase of EUR 50 million, and the IFC also acquired a stake with EUR 40 million, as did Germany`s DEG with EUR 20 million and SwedFund with EUR 10 million. The state obliged to make another capital increase of EUR 110 million, so as to not lose its stake. Komercijalna Banka has 202 branch offices in Serbia, with 2,700 employees, as well as banks in Republika Srpska and Montenegro.