Erste Group starts 660 mln. EUR share sale through accelerated bookbuilt offering (ABO). ABO books are to close @ 7:15am UK time. Erste began the share sale yesterday with a “pre-placement” to institutional investors that it expects to complete today. Existing shareholders can subscribe to the share sale from tomorrow, according to the company. Erste shares should be offered at 18.5 to 19.15 EUR in the placement, BBG has just reported. Erste also said yesterday that its biggest shareholder, a foundation Erste Stiftung that owns 20%, may even sell some shares to satisfy demand by outside investors. / Sounds slightly NEGATIVE to us with respect to a price indication as well as Erste Stiftung. Please note, Erste said June-24 it plans to fully redeem 1.76 bln. EUR of participation capital, sell 660 mln. EUR new shares in 3Q. The deal’s volume is equivalent to 8.2% of Erste’s market capitalization.