FOCUS SHORT

Czech Credium acquires OTP Leasing

THE CZECH financial group Credium, owned by the French firm Sofinco, has become the new owner of OTP Leasing. Merkantil Bank Ltd, a 100-percent subsidiary of OTP Bank Plc., in line with its revised regional strategy, sold its share in OTP Leasing together with another shareholder, OTP Banka Slovensko, in November 2008, the SITA newswire wrote. The Hungarian OTP Bank offered the leasing company for sale at the beginning of 2008.

THE CZECH financial group Credium, owned by the French firm Sofinco, has become the new owner of OTP Leasing. Merkantil Bank Ltd, a 100-percent subsidiary of OTP Bank Plc., in line with its revised regional strategy, sold its share in OTP Leasing together with another shareholder, OTP Banka Slovensko, in November 2008, the SITA newswire wrote. The Hungarian OTP Bank offered the leasing company for sale at the beginning of 2008.

Merkantil Bank modified its regional strategy as a result of the crisis in international financial markets and for that reason it is concentrating on the Hungarian market and has postponed its expansion into Russia, Ukraine and Kazakhstan for the time being.

OTP Leasing entered the leasing market in Slovakia in 2002 as an affiliation of OTP Banka Slovensko and the Hungarian Merkantil Bank. The French Sofinco was established in 1951. Together with Credium, they are part of the French bank group Crédit Agricole.

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