Eurobank agrees to sell Turkish subsidiary to Burgan

Kuwait?s Burgan Bank has reached a deal to buy a 70 percent stake in Turkey?s Eurobank Tekfen, a partnership of Greece?s Eurobank EFG and Turkey?s Tekfen Holding, sources with knowledge of the deal said on Wednesday.

The stake sale comes as Greek banks, hit by the country?s sovereign debt crisis, look to boost their capital base to cope with a protracted recession and rise in nonperforming loans.

Eurobank, Greece?s second-largest lender, said in July last year it had begun talks to sell a majority stake in Eurobank Tekfen as it sought to safeguard its balance sheet against debt losses.

In December Eurobank Tekfen said talks with three potential buyers were continuing. The sources said yesterday the deal with Burgan Bank, the commercial banking arm of Kuwait Projects Co (KIPCO), was in excess of Eurobank Tekfen?s equity capital value of 608.3 million Turkish lira ($347 million).

?A deal has been reached. An official statement is expected in the coming couple of weeks,? one of the sources told Reuters.

The deal also includes an option for Burgan to buy Tekfen?s 29.26 percent stake in Eurobank Tekfen. Eurobank bought 70 percent of Tekfenbank in 2007. [Reuters]