Bloomberg News

Sberbank Said to Seek $1.2 Billion Loan to Match Rival’s VTB

October 25, 2011

(Updates with lending volumes in third paragraph.)

Oct. 25 (Bloomberg) -- OAO Sberbank, Russia’s largest lender, is seeking a $1.2 billion loan paying the same interest as rival VTB Group, according to two people with direct knowledge of the deal.

The Moscow-based firm is in negotiations with banks for a three-year term loan paying 130 basis points more than the London interbank offered rate, rising to 165 basis points once fees of 105 basis points are included, said the people, who declined to be identified as the deal is private.

VTB, Russia’s second biggest bank, signed a $3.13 billion loan from 28 banks at the same interest in July in the largest syndicated deal for a Russian lender earlier this year. Loans to Russian borrowers have grown by a third this year to $40 billion, according to data compiled by Bloomberg.

A Sberbank spokesman didn’t respond to an e-mailed request for comment.

Sberbank has asked eight of its regular lenders to provide $150 million each in the self-arranged deal, which will replace a $1.2 billion facility that matured last week, the people said. A basis point is 0.01 percentage point.

Sberbank’s debt is rated A3 by Moody’s Investors Service and BBB by Fitch Ratings. VTB has ratings of Baa1 by Moody’s and BBB by Standard & Poor’s and Fitch.

--with assistance from Denis Maternovsky in Moscow. Editors: Cecile Gutscher, Paul Armstrong

To contact the reporters on this story: Stephen Morris in London at or Patricia Kuo in London at

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Faris Khan at

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