WARSAW, July 6 (Reuters) - Austria’s Raiffeisen Bank International (RBI) is likely to put the sale of its Polish business on hold after failing to find enough investors for a planned IPO, sources familiar with the situation said on Thursday.
RBI was due to sell a 15 percent stake via an initial public offering to fulfill a commitment to the Polish regulator, which demands lenders are listed to ensure better transparency and safety of Poland’s banking sector.
The stake is worth around 950 million zloty ($255 million) at book value, but investors have demanded a hefty discount due to the bank’s low profitability and portfolio of toxic Swiss franc denominated mortgages.
“There is a small subscription for 0.6 (to Book Value). The IPO will likely be suspended or cancelled,” one source said of the process. Book-building had been due to close on Thursday.
People familiar with the situation also said that Raiffeisen would potentially agree to sell the shares at 0.9 to book value, although this was likely to be unachievable due to Raiffeisen Polbank’s portfolio of Swiss franc denominated home loans.
“The IPO will be put on hold or postponed, it depends on the regulator. Demand is very weak,” one investment banker said.
RBI declined to comment. (Reporting by Agnieszka Barteczko, Marcin Goclowski and Anna Koper; additional reporting by Francois Murphy in VIENNA; editing by Alexander Smith)