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Slovenia's Gorenjska Banka to issue new shares to cover capital shortfall

Fri 23rd October, 2015 1:06pm
By Marja Novak 
    LJUBLJANA, Oct 23 (Reuters) - Slovenia's Gorenjska Banka 
will issue new shares worth at least 13 million euros ($14 
million) to cover a capital shortfall, in line with demands from 
the Bank of Slovenia, the bank's chief executive told Reuters on 
Friday. 
    The central bank said in March Gorenjska had a capital 
shortfall of 58 million euros and the bank has already reduced 
the figure to 13 million, Andrej Andoljsek said in a telephone 
interview.  ID:nL5N0W43FY   
    "We will announce the new share issue in the second half of 
November or at the start of December, with the issuing process 
being completed by the end of the year," Andoljsek said. 
    He could not give the exact size of the issue or its price. 
"We are confident that we will issue new shares successfully," 
he said, adding the bank will not need state help. 
    Gorenjska, with a market share of about 4 percent by balance 
sheet assets, is one of eight Slovenian banks that failed the 
country's stress tests in December 2013 and the last of those to 
raise capital. 
    In December 2013 the Slovenian government had to pour more 
than 3 billion euros into mostly state-owned banks to prevent 
them from collapsing under the weight of bad loans. In this way 
the country managed to narrowly avoid an international bailout. 
    Gorenjska, not among recipients of state help in 2013, has 
already reduced bad loans to 25 percent of the total from 33 
percent at the start of 2014 and hopes to further reduce the 
amount to below 23 percent by end-2015. 
    The bank expects to end 2015 with a net profit of more than  
the 2 million euros achieved in 2014, Andoljsek said. 
    He also said the bank wishes to accelerate growth through a 
possible merger with another local bank, but gave no further 
details. 
    The bank's largest owner, local tourism and financial 
company Sava  SAVA.LJ , is selling its 44.07 percent stake in 
Gorenjska, also in line with Bank of Slovenia demands. Andoljsek 
said the disposal could take place in parallel to the sale of 
the new stock.  ID:nL8N12E1QX   
($1 = 0.9012 euros) 
 
 (Reporting by Marja Novak; Editing by David Holmes) 
 ((Marja.Novak@thomsonreuters.com; +386-1-5058805;)(Reuters 
Messaging: marja.novak.thomsonreuters.com@reuters.net)) 
 
Keywords: SLOVENIA GORENJSKA/ISSUE
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