Alior Jumps as Morgan Stanley, Barclays Advise Buy: Warsaw Mover

Alior Bank SA, whose initial public offering was the biggest in Warsaw last year, jumped to a record after Barclays Plc, Morgan Stanley and Renaissance Capital recommended buying the Polish lender.

The shares advanced 6.3 percent to 69.5 zloty in Warsaw, increasing for a fourth day to the highest since December debut. Morgan Stanley and Barclays both started the stock as overweight, with share-price estimates of 80 zloty and 90.5 zloty, respectively. Warsaw’s WIG20 index of the country’s largest and most liquid companies advanced 0.1 percent today.

Alior is “a rare growth story among Polish and Europe, Middle East and Africa banks, combining a greenfield operating base, experienced management and a focus on high, risk-adjusted returns,” Daniel Cowan and Magdalena L Stoklosa, analysts at Morgan Stanley in London, said in a research note today. The company, which owns Poland’s third-largest network, raised 700 million zloty last year from a new share sale to boost lending.

The bank’s retail business “should be the engine of growth, given its plans for market positioning in key consumer portfolios,” according to analysts.

Renaissance Capital initiated the bank with a buy rating, setting a price target of 93.3 zloty.

Carlo Tassara SpA, owned by French investor Romain Zaleski and founder of Alior, is looking to sell its remaining 34 percent stake this year to reduce debt, according to its IPO prospectus.

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