Kredyt Bank SA (KRB), the Polish unit of KBC Groep NV, rose to its highest level since November on plans to merge it with Banco Santander SA (SAN)’s Bank Zachodni WBK SA. (BZW)
Kredyt Bank gained as much as 18 percent, its biggest-ever gain since the lender’s stock-market debut in 1994, and was trading 14 percent higher at 13.64 zloty at 10:20 a.m. in Warsaw. Zachodni tumbled the most in more than two months and traded 4.7 percent lower to 220.1 zloty.
KBC received 7 billion euros in Belgian rescue funds and planned to sell 80 percent of Kredyt Bank to meet its pledge to repay the government.
The transaction will give Santander a 77 percent stake of the merged lender, while KBC will have 16 percent. The deal values Kredyt Bank shares at 15.75 zloty and requires Santander to help Brussels-based KBC lower its stake in the merged entity to below 10 percent immediately after the takeover.
Santander, the biggest bank in the euro region by market value, is seeking to expand in Poland to help diversify its business as profit slumps at home following Spain’s property crash.
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