(9 173 HUF, 0,81%) Leasing d.d., subsidiary of the Merkantil group and Banka Hvatska, took over 100% shares in Croatian Z Plus Leasing from AutoZubak. The transaction is a subject to a regulatory approval in Croatia and Hungary. Z Plus Leasing's portfolio was worth EUR 14.8m at the end of 2006, its clients include mostly SME's as well as retail clients. The acquisition is expected to boost Leasing's profitability, in addition to increasing its market share. Both companies have expressed willingness for future partnership in the field of auto finance.
Our view: The acquisition is in line with OTP's expansion strategy, however it is not significant, given the small size. Leasing, which has started operations in Croatia in October 2006, plans to offer auto and real estate finance as well as financing plans for marine vehicles. The company is aiming for 8% market share in 5 years. We believe the news could have some marginally positive impact on the stock price today.