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Report: VTB Bank launches sale of Ukrainian unit

JSC VTB Bank wants to sell its Ukrainian unit PJSC BM BANK by March 1, 2017, Kommersant reported Dec. 20.

The group took a strategic decision to sell the lender, with formal proposals sent to "all interested parties," VTB Bank's press office told the newspaper, without specifying whether any offers had already been received.

The launch of the sale process has become possible after Ukrainian authorities revised sanctions imposed on BM Bank, allowing VTB to recapitalize its subsidiary. In November, BM Bank shareholders decided to double its capital to 3.28 billion Ukrainian hryvnia.

The revision of sanctions increased the chances of finding a buyer, but the potential sale will be carried out with a significant discount, the news report said. If the bank is not sold by March 1, it will be merged into VTB Bank PJSC (Ukraine) in order to optimize costs, Kommersant added, citing market sources.

As of Dec. 19, US$1 was equivalent to 26.27 Ukrainian hryvnia.