PKO BP bank plans to improve market position in Poland
October 9, 2012
PKO BP CEO Zbigniew Jagiello
Poland's top bank PKO BP is ready for acquisitions both on the Polish and international markets, PKO BP CEO Zbigniew Jagiello said adding that smaller banks are likely to suffer from the expected economic slowdown, which will pave the way for PKO BP to take over some assets and strengthen its position.
Poland's banking market could see more consolidation in the coming period that could keep the nation's largest bank PKO BP active amongst potential buyers if quality banks with a strong urban presence go on offer, Jagiello told reporters.
"When we look now at what PKO should do in the nearest future, we should strengthen our position in Poland," Jagiello said.
And while PKO BP can weather any tough times ahead and even find cost efficiencies to ease any pressure on the bottom line, the real prize in the downturn would be to snatch up a bank with a strong urban presence.
An 'urban' bank could help PKO BP overcome what Jagiello feels is a certain "absence on main street" and legacy branch network problems that stem from having "slept through" network rebuilding and banking sector changes visible in the prior banking boom.
With an outlook for six quarters of subdued economic growth near the 2% mark, Jagiello sees little guys again forced onto the auction block as fee income falls on products across the banking sector.
"Smaller banks with no more than 6 to 7% will have problems," Jagiello said.
The bank will not have problems with financing the acquisitions using its retained profits, bond issues and sovereign funds partnership as a source of financing.
If an offer comes to a bid, dividends could be trimmed, capital could be raised through subordinated debt issues, and a wide variety of partners could be brought on board, Jagiello said.