Lombard Bank Malta plc announced on 15 October that Marfin Popular Bank Public Company Ltd. of Cyprus had agreed to acquire a stake of circa 43% in Lombard Bank from Banca della Svizzera Italiana SA, Lugano as well as from other foreign shareholders. This transaction is, however, still subject to regulatory approval. The cost of this acquisition was reportedly agreed at €48.3 million (Lm20.7 million), valuing Lombard Bank at €112.3 million (Lm48.2 million) or approx. Lm5.58 per share.
Marfin Popular Bank is the result of the recent merger between Marfin Financial Group, Cyprus Popular Bank, and Egnatia. The new entity is the second biggest bank in Cyprus and the fifth biggest bank in Greece in term of assets, which amounted to EUR29 billion. Marfin Popular Bank has total shareholders’ funds in excess of EUR3.4 billion and is listed on both the Cyprus and Athens Stock Exchanges with a market capitalisation of almost EUR8 billion. Marfin Popular Bank has a well diversified portfolio of activity including retail, CIB, Asset Management and Treasury.
The Company Announcement stated that this investment falls within the region of interest and focus of Marfin Popular Group given Malta’s geographic positioning and macroeconomic environment. Both Marfin and Lombard Bank’s Board of Directors believe that the participation stands to benefit both organisations.