Societe Generale to enter Azerbaijani bank market no sooner than 2010
Azerbaijan, Baku, Baku, July 10 / corr Trend I.Khalilova /
French corporate and investment bank Societe Generale has not abandoned is plans of entering the banking market of Azerbaijan. However, no intensive actions are expected in this direction by 2010, Societe Generale Regional Representative in Azerbaijan Teyba Guliyeva said.
"The bank shows tremendous interests towards Azerbaijan, whilst the international financial crisis made all financial organizations, which mostly suffered in fact, to reconsider its strategies, investing plans, Guliyeva said. In 2009 banks will try to get reorganized and destructed. Therefore, no active work is expected in this direction by 2010".
According to Guliyeva, in 2009 banks intend to gather first of all "in their naïve markets, to reconsider and to adapt their strategies on the current situation". Nevertheless, there is still vast interest towards Azerbaijan, including entrance to the banking sector of the country, Gulieysa said.
Societe Generale is considering different options to enter the Azerbaijani market as a bank. The French bank planned to open or purchase a bank in Azerbaijan, enabling to develop retail operations, Guliyeva said.
According to the strategy of Societe Generale, while joining banks, it claims to acquire the control package. Amongst the CIS countries, Societe Generale mostly participates in the Russian banking market. The first deal was concluded with Rosbank where the French bank acquired 51% shares. In the Caucasus, the first deal was concluded with Georgia's Republic Bank where Societe Generale acquired a 70% participation share.
The Bank carries out large operations in Azerbaijan, but the first step was made to join the banking market of Georgia because the procedures in this country are easy and the deal cheaper.
Trend reported earlier, with reference to the National Bank of Azerbaijan, currently Societe Generale considers opening a daughter bank or branch in Azerbaijan. Although the bank has considered the possibility of acquiring business participation in the control package in Azerbaijan's banking sector, difficulties appeared with regards to the last of the partners. Many banks did not agree to sell their control packages.
According to the Azerbaijani banking legislation, the requirements to establish 100% daughter company or branch are similar. Their activities may be regulated through local legislation and in both cases, the capital should amount to AZN 10mln.
The representation of Societe Generale functions in Azerbaijan and through it the bank considers projects in private and State sectors. Societe Generale has been operating in Azerbaijan since 1998 through its regional representative offices covering Azerbaijan, Georgia and Turkmenistan.
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