Serbia’s central bank does not give approval for sale of Telenor Banka

The NBS has not given the nod for the acquisition of Telenor Banka by Bulgarian-based River Styxx Capital after assessing that the fund does not meet the necessary requirements of Serbian regulations, the daily Vecernje Novosti reported. Telenor confirmed for the media that there is no approval for a strategic partnership with the fund, under which the investor was supposed to acquire 85% of shares in the bank. Asked for comment, CEO of River Styxx Capital Elvin Guri said the fund will try to complete the deal nonetheless. He noted that the fund will continue talks with the relevant state institutions in order to find the best solution.

In Aug 2017 Telenor Banka said it had reached an agreement with River Styxx Capital on a strategic partnership. Telenor Banka, the first mobile and online bank in Serbia, was launched in Sep 2014 and has attracted more than 300,000 customers so far. It is one of the smallest banks, ranked 24th out of 30 banks operating in the country, with a market share of 0.4% in terms of assets as of end-2017.

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