Sberbank Buys 70% Stake in BNP Consumer Finance Unit

(Corrects first paragraph of story published yesterday to show Sberbank is buying a stake in BNP Paribas’s Russia consumer finance unit.)

OAO Sberbank, Russia’s largest bank, acquired 70 percent of BNP Paribas SA’s (BNP) consumer finance unit in Russia.

The new entity will use the French bank’s Cetelem brand and the remaining 30 percent will be retained by Paris-based BNP Paribas, Sberbank said in an e-mailed statement today. Sberbank paid 5.1 billion rubles ($157 million), Interfax reported today, citing Senior Vice President Denis Bugrov.

The operation will be led by Andrey Lykov, former adviser to president and chairman of the board of Sberbank, the company said.

Sberbank’s deals this year include Turkey’s Denizbank, acquired in June for $3.5 billion, and most of Oesterreichische Volksbanken AG (VBPS)’s eastern European business for 505 million euros ($633 million) in February. The latter deal was as a platform to expand in the region following its $1 billion acquisition in January of Moscow brokerage Troika Dialog.

Setting up the bank with Cetelem is the best way to enter the “point-of-sale finance market” where Sberbank isn’t active, Bugrov said in the statement. Cetelem has a 4.5 percent share of the Russian market, Bugrov said.

To contact the reporter on this story: Jason Corcoran in Moscow at jcorcoran13@bloomberg.net

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Frank Connelly at fconnelly@bloomberg.net

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