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NKBM Projected to Make EUR 70M End-Year Loss

Maribor, 12 July (STA) - Slovenia's second largest bank, NKBM, is expected to end 2012 with a net loss of EUR 70m, according to a revised business plan adopted by the supervisory board on Thursday. The original plan envisaged a small net profit.

The revision is a consequence of the continued weakness of the Slovenian economy and "intensive cleaning" of the balance sheet, the bank said in a written statement.

The restructuring will be based on the cleaning of non-performing loans and disposal of non-core assets, foremost among them a majority stake in insurer Zavarovalnica Maribor.

Additionally to the offloading of assets, the supervisors tasked the management today with taking further measures to shore up the bank's balance sheet.

The only way the bank can return to profitability is with sound foundations. It needs to be cleaned to make it ready for growth and development, CEO Aleš Hauc told the press today.

The NKBM group ended 2011 with a higher-than-expected net loss of EUR 81m.

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