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Lithuanian bank association's head calls Luminor deal vote of confidence in Baltic banking

BC, Vilnius, 13.09.2018.Print version
US investment company Blackstone's decision to buy a majority stake in the Baltic bank Luminor shows confidence in the Baltic banking system and may encourage further interest from major private equity funds in investing in the region, the president of the Lithuanian Banks' Association (LBA) said on Thursday, citing LETA,

"First, this puts an end to various market speculations about when and who will purchase Luminor," Mantas Zalatorius told.  

"Second, that clarity comes with a really big private equity fund. This is a very clear signal that the US fund -- and Blackstone is a really big fund -- has confidence in the region, in Luminor’s management team and in the Baltic banking system," he said.  

Luminor announced on Thursday that a consortium led by private equity funds managed by Blackstone is buying a 60% stake in the Baltic bank for 1 billion euros. Luminor’s current owners, Nordea and DNB, will each retain 20% of shares in the Baltic bank and will maintain their presence on the board of directors. 

The deal, which is subject to approvals from local regulators and the European Central Bank, is expected to be closed in the first half of 2019.

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