Hungary Plans State-Owned Lender, Eyes Granit Bank

(Corrects ownership of Takarekbank in first paragraph.)

Hungary is planning to set up a state-owned commercial bank and is contemplating buying a stake in commercial lenders Granit Bank Zrt., owned by real-estate developer Sandor Demjan, and Takarekbank Zrt., news website Origo said, citing several unidentified people.

Due diligence has started both at Granit Bank, in which Demjan has close to 90 percent, and at Takarekbank, which is minority-owned by Germany’s DZ Bank (DZBK), according to Origo.

The government is seeking to boost state ownership in the banking industry, carve out a market share as foreign-owned lenders retract, and boost lending, which froze during the economic crisis, Origo said.

To contact the reporter on this story: Edith Balazs in Budapest at

To contact the editor responsible for this story: James M. Gomez at

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