KB Kookmin Bank selected a local bank in Kazakhstan as a preferred bidder for the sale of Kazakhstan's Bank CenterCredit (BCC), which made a loss of 950 billion won (US$820.38 million).
The bank announced on Feb. 1 that it chose a consortium led by Tsesna Bank as a preferred bidder for the sale of its shares in BCC and it will begin talks on the stock acquisition deal. When the negotiation goes well, the stock acquisition procedure will be completed by the end of the first half of this year. The Tsesna Bank consortium plans to increase capital after taking over BCC and proceed with the merger with Tsesna Bank later.
KB Kookmin Bank bought a 41.9 percent stake in BCC for 954.1 billion won (US$823.92 million) in August 2008. The bank was planning to use BCC as the foundation to expand its global business at that time, but it saw a huge loss as the Kazakhstan's national currency, tenge, was devalued due to the global financial crisis.
An official from Kookmin Bank said, “Even after selling the stake in BCC, we will continue to provide financial services, including foreign exchange transaction, to Korean customers through our current Korean desk. We will also maintain the partnership with BCC in the information technology (IT) and car business sectors.”