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OTP Bank: shortlisted for Splitska Banka

17.2.2006 10:08
Autor: KBC/Patria

According to Reuters, OTP has been shortlisted as a potential buyer in the sale of Splitska Banka from UniCredito. The press has speculated that the price for Splitska Banka could reach EUR 800m, equating to a historical P/B of 3.3x and a 2005F P/E of 23.2x (2005F net income = EUR 34.6m) Whilst the rumoured price may seem somewhat expensive, expectations in the region have grown lately, following Erste Bank's acquisition of BCR at a P/B of 5.8x and Banca Intesa acquisition of Ukrainian Ukrsotsbank at a P/B of 7.0x, and the rise of stock market valuations throughout the region. Moreover, at least in the case of OTP Bank, some premium to stand-alone fair value could be justified by the potential for cost synergy via a combination with Nova Banka. Although latest press rumours point Polish PKO BP as the strongest competitor. UniCredito may sell Croatian Splitska Banka to PKO BP in order to obtain a positive decision on the merger of Bank Pekao with Bank BPH. OTP Bank would be also seen by Unicredito as stronger competitor on the market as together with ownership of Nova Banka, the acquisition of Splitska Banka would boost OTP's market share to some 13% (Splitska Banka has some 10% market share in loans and 7% in deposits in 2004).

OTP Bank has yet to overpay for an acquisition and, in our opinion, is more likely to walk away than overpay. In this context, the news that it has been short-listed for a potentially positive acquisition could have a slightly positive trading impact.


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