Bank Austria Creditanstalt acquires Nova Banjalucka Banka

Austrian BA-CA takes over the third-largest bank in Republika Srpska
Network of 72 offices and 121 million euros total assets
More than 150,000 customers can benefit from modern and innovative banking products and services

Today, Bank Austria Creditanstalt (BA-CA) acquired the majority share of 83.27 per cent in Nova Banjalucka Banka (NBB) in Republika Srpska, Bosnia & Herzegovina (BiH). The sellers of the 83.27 per cent majority interest are Mr. Dragoljub Lekic and European Construction Ltd. The remaining 16.73 per cent are owned by minority shareholders.


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NBB has total assets of EUR 121 million (as at 30 June 2005) and a market share of 12.5 per cent, which makes it the number 3 bank in Republika Srpska and number 12 with a 2.4 per cent market share in the total BiH banking sector. With a network of 72 offices and a total of 512 employees, the bank serves about 150,000 retail customers in Republika Srpska. NBB was created in 1911 and privatized in 2002. It focuses on small and medium-sized businesses and retail customers.

BA-CA has been active in Bosnia and Herzegovina since December 2001 through its subsidiary HVB Bank Bosna i Hercegovina. In 2003, BA-CA acquired Central Profit Banka and merged it with its existing subsidiary in 2004 to create the fourth-largest bank on the Bosnian banking market. Today, HVB Central Profit Banka operates a country-wide network of 37 branches with total assets of 443 million euros (as at 30 June 2005). Its 450 employees serve some 150,000 customers.

By acquiring Nova Banjalucka Banka, BA-CA will further enhance and strengthen its excellent position on the banking market in Bosnia & Herzegovina and support the development of the banking sector in Republika Srpska. HVB Central Profit Banka together with NBB will serve 300,000 customers in 109 branches. Combined total assets will be EUR 564 million (as at 30 June 2005), making BA-CA strengthen its fourth place in the total BiH banking sector. BA-CA’s market share in Bosnia & Herzegovina will increase from currently 8.5 to 10.9 per cent. In a first step, HVB Central Profit Banka and NBB will continue to operate as two legally independent entities.

BA-CA operates one of the leading international banking networks in CEE. With total assets of EUR 156 billion and a market share of around 20 per cent, BA-CA is by far the biggest bank in Austria. In CEE, BA-CA operates more than 1,100 offices in 11 countries. Some 19,500 employees serve more than 5.4 million customers. Since November 2005, BA-CA is a member of the Italian UniCredit Group. Thus, BA-CA is part of a strong European banking network which serves more than 28 million customers via 7,000 offices in 20 countries. By joining forces, the new Group will significantly strengthen its position in Central and Eastern Europe, increasing the number of outlets to some 2,800 and the number of clients to around 16 million.


Bank Austria Creditanstalt, International Press Relations
Ildiko Fueredi-Kolarik, phone: +43-50505-56102, e-mail: ildiko.fueredi-kolarik@ba-ca.com