March 30, 2017 / 11:17 AM / 8 months ago

Austrian "bad bank" Heta winding down assets ahead of schedule

ZURICH, March 30 (Reuters) - Austrian “bad bank” Heta Asset Resolution AG, the vehicle disposing of the remnants of failed lender Hypo Alpe Adria, is well ahead of plans to wind down 80 percent of its portfolio by the end of 2018 and may hit the goal this year, it said.

The collapse of Hypo Alpe Adria has cost Austria billions of euros. Its home province of Carinthia in October clinched a buyback of the bank’s debt, averting the threat of bankruptcy for the region unable to honour debt guarantees it had granted.

Heta swung to a profit last year thanks to a debt cut that helped eliminate its negative equity value the year before.

It posted a 2016 profit of 7.48 billion euros ($8.03 billion) under Austrian accounting standards. Under IFRS standards it made a profit of 6.71 billion euros.

Its total assets under local standards edged up to 9.9 billion euros and its cash reserves swelled to 6.2 billion from 4.3 billion the year before, Heta said on Thursday.

Cash reserves rose further to 7.9 billion by the end of March, it added, helped by the early ending of refinancing lines and the sale of assets, including all its Italian operations. ($1 = 0.9310 euros) (Reporting by Michael Shields; Editing by Brenna Hughes Neghaiwi)

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