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Reinsurer Sava Offers New Shares at EUR 7 Apiece

Ljubljana, 21 May (STA) - Reinsurer Pozavarovalnica Sava has set the price of new shares at EUR 7 apiece after 15 prospective domestic and foreign investors offered non-binding bids in the combined amount of EUR 52m.

The decision to offer a total of 7,857,143 new shares at EUR 7 apiece as part of the ongoing process to raise EUR 55m in capital was endorsed by the reinsurer's supervisory board on Monday and announced via website of the Ljubljana Stock Exchange on Tuesday.

The company had initially announced that the price per share would be between seven and nine euros, depending on the interest expressed by major potential investors and the general situation in the financial markets. The emission price will be the same for all eligible investors.

Non-binding bids totalling EUR 52m have been made by 15 larger potential domestic and foreign investors, among them the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD).

But not all institutionalised investors have yet been invited to submit their bids and the roadshows will continue to take place until 21 June for institutionalised investors in the EU, Croatia and the US.

The shareholders as on 11 January 2013 have pre-emptive rights to subscribe to new shares in the ratio of 0.84 share per each existing share held on the mentioned date.

The EBRD will be given priority as an invited investor in the third round of recapitalisation; the bank has already expressed interest to pay in between EUR 7.5m and EUR 10m worth of new shares.

The reinsurer will use EUR 50m of the capital raised to complete the acquisition of Zavarovalnica Maribor, Slovenia's third largest insurer, and the remaining EUR 5m to secure capital adequacy.

Pozavarovalnica Sava and the state-run SOD fund acquired a 50.99% stake in the insurer from the NKBM bank at the end of last year in a deal worth EUR 65m to increase their shareholding to 99.67%. The reinsurer will later also acquire SOD's share of 39.21%.

The takeover is expected to be completed this year, after which Zavarovalnica Maribor will be integrated in the group Sava Re, which expects to increase premiums collected above EUR 418m and a profit of between EUR 30m and 33m for this year. The amount of premiums is set to increase to EUR 570m by 2017.

The supervisory board on Monday re-appointed the reinsurer's management under the helm of Zvonko Ivanušič for another five-year term.

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