Telenor Serbia makes investment in mobile finance services

Telenor Serbia makes investment in mobile finance services

Belgian banking and insurance firm KBC has agreed the sale of its Serbian entity, KBC Banka, to Telenor Serbia and Société Générale Srbija.

The Norwegian operator will obtain the entirety of KBC Banka’s shares, which is hoped to boost its key strategy, identified last year, in mobile financial services.

Société Générale Srbija, a Serbian banking firm, is to acquire KBC Banka’s key assets and deposits, KBC said in a statement.

Financial details of the deal were not disclosed by any party, but the transaction is expected to have a negative impact on KBC earnings.

This will be countered largely by a capital release of approximately €42 million, and result in what a “negligible” total capital release, according to local reports.

“The divestment of KBC Banka further strengthens our focus on our core bancassurance [bank insurance model or BIM] markets while reducing our risk profile,” said Johan Thijs, CEO at KBC Group.

“Today's announcement marks KBC's exit from the Serbian market and the end of period of uncertainty for KBC Banka.”

Ove Fredheim took over as CEO of Telenor Serbia in August last year.

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