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NKBM Bank Seeks Warsaw Listing, Capital Hike

Maribor, 22 December (STA) - NKBM, Slovenia's second largest bank, plans a secondary listing on the Warsaw Stock Exchange in 2011 and a capital increase with the issue of up to 13 million new shares. A listing in Warsaw, the leading exchange in Eastern Europe, will provide access to more investors, the bank said Wednesday.

The capital increase, worth up to half of the share capital, is being sought to facilitate the crediting of businesses, for group consolidation and for implementation of expansion strategy, chief supervisor Danilo Toplek told the press.

Like many other European banks, NKBM needs fresh capital. "This is not an overnight decision, the AGM had adopted a resolution in July allowing the issue of new ordinary shares worth up to a half of the share capital," Toplek said.

"2011 will still be tough, but 2012 will definitely be the first year of strong recovery of the global economy; we want to be ready to actively participate and penetrate new markets," CEO Matjaz Kovacic added.

Existing shareholders will have preemptive right to purchase newly issued shares. The maximum share issue would be worth EUR 134m at current market prices, but Kovacic noted that the actual sum would depend on pricing at the moment of issue.

NKBM lost 1.24% on the Ljubljana Stock Exchange today before going public with the capital hike and the Warsaw listing. It has lost 15% so far this year, outperforming the SBI TOP benchmark index.

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