EBRD becomes a shareholder in Poland’s Alior Bank

By Olga Rosca

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The EBRD has acquired a stake in Alior Bank, providing important support for the Polish lender as it broadens out its ownership structure.

The EBRD took an 8.83 per cent stake in Alior Bank via its initial public offering (IPO) in Warsaw, purchasing 5,614,035 shares for 320 million Polish zloty, equivalent to €78 million. 

Founded four years ago, Alior Bank is a fast-growing universal bank and the Polish market leader in terms of innovative banking products and customer acquisition. Alior Bank has established this position thanks to building the third-largest distribution network in Poland based on number of locations; operating new technology-based distribution channels (including online and mobile banking) offering innovative banking products; and setting new, high standards in the Polish banking sector.

New funds will enable Alior Bank to continue developing highly innovative services, increasing its loan portfolio and strengthening new distribution channels.

Announcing the deal, EBRD Director for EU Banks, Sylvia Gansser-Potts, said: “The EBRD will play a stabilising anchor role in the bank’s new ownership structure. As the largest private offering on the Warsaw Stock Exchange, this is a landmark transaction for the Polish capital markets, transferring the ownership of Alior Bank from a single private shareholder to a broad and dispersed group of institutional shareholders. The EBRD’s investment will also support Alior Bank’s use of innovation in its operations, capturing new market niches and setting itself apart from competitors.”

Alior Bank’s Deputy CEO, Niels Lundorff, said: “It is important for Alior Bank to have international, high-quality shareholders to support Alior Bank’s focus on becoming the central and eastern Europe-based bank that sets European standards for integrating high banking service levels with best practice banking leadership. We are proud of the trust the EBRD is showing us by becoming one of our largest shareholders.”

To date, EBRD has invested about €5.8 billion in the Polish economy in over 300 projects.

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