Hungary's MKB can grow in any way from next year -CEO

Hungary's MKB Bank would be free to grow its business through acquisitions or increasing lending when the European Union lifts the restrictions on business activity imposed after its rescue, Chief Executive Adam Balog said on Monday.

Adds detail

BUDAPEST, June 17 (Reuters) - Hungary's MKB Bank MKBB.BUwould be free to grow its business through acquisitions or increasing lending when the European Union lifts the restrictions on business activity imposed after its rescue, Chief Executive Adam Balog said on Monday.

Hungary's eighth-largest lender by assets is in the final stages of an EU restructuring, which rescued it from the brink of bankruptcy after a large stock of project loans went bust during the financial crisis.

In return for state aid received in 2015, the EU imposed curbs on business activity, including a ban on acquisitions, a limit on its balance sheet and lending risk.

"We have wrapped up the reorganisation and all of our figures have converged with those of other players in the banking system," Balog told a news conference.

Shares in MKB started trading on the Budapest Stock Exchange on Monday. The bank has an initial market capitalisation of more than 197 billion forints ($685.24 million), making it the sixth-largest stock on the exchange according to a press release.

The opening price of the shares came to 1,972 forints, MKB said in a stock exchange filing. The bank has a free float of 8.5 percent.

($1 = 287.49 forints)

(Reporting by Gergely Szakacs, editing by Louise Heavens)

((gergely.szakacs@reuters.com ; https://twitter.com/szakacsg ; +36 1 882 3606 ; https://www.reuters.com/journalists/gergely-szakacs))

The views and opinions expressed herein are the views and opinions of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of Nasdaq, Inc.

Reuters

Reuters, the news and media division of Thomson Reuters, is the world’s largest international multimedia news provider reaching more than one billion people every day. Reuters provides trusted business, financial, national, and international news to professionals via Thomson Reuters desktops, the world's media organizations, and directly to consumers at Reuters.com and via Reuters TV.

Learn More