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NBG book building starts for share capital increase

By Yiannis Papadoyiannis

The book for National Bank of Greece’s 2.5-billion-euro share capital increase opens on Tuesday and will close on Thursday, with the price for the sale of the new shares to be determined by investor offers.

On Saturday a general meeting of the bank will approve the share increase and the share price, completing the process.

Bank officials expressed optimism to Kathimerini about the success of the NBG endeavor, stressing investors’ strong interest during the presentations conducted abroad and the great response of the international investment community to the group’s recent bond issue. The 750-million-euro bond issue was three times oversubscribed as investors offered funds equal to 2.5 billion.

Analysts say that given the spectacular improvement in the climate regarding Greece and the strong investment interest in “Greek risk,” NBG’s share issue will also likely be oversubscribed. Analysts expect the price of the new shares to range between 2.10 and 2.60 euros.

Following dozens of presentations to investors in Boston, New York and London, bank representatives are now in Paris and are expected to conclude on Tuesday. The NBG officials have met with over 120 representatives of institutional portfolios within just a few days, reflecting the great interest in the increase.

Goldman Sachs International and Morgan Stanley will be the international coordinators and managers of the offers book. The share capital increase will be conducted via private placement and the whole of the issue will be allocated to investors abroad.

Analysts add that the completion of the increase will considerably strengthen private participation in the bank’s share capital and reduce the holding of the Hellenic Financial Stability Fund (HFSF). From 84.39 percent today, the stake of the bank bailout fund that performed the lender’s recapitalization will go down to 58 percent, with the participation of the private sector growing to 42 percent.

The process will also make National one of the best capitalized banks on a European level, given also the 1.04 billion euros it will secure through the restructuring of its assets.

ekathimerini.com , Monday May 5, 2014 (23:18)  
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