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Santander, KBC To Sell Stake In Poland's Bank Zachodni WBK

Spanish banking products provider Banco Santander, S.A. (SAN,BNC.L) Monday said it will sell up to 5.2 percent of its stake in Poland's Bank Zachodni WBK SA, as Belgian multi-channel bank KBC Group NV (KBCSF.PK, KBCSY.PK) places about 16.2 percent in market.

The banks will offer up to 20 million shares in BZ WBK by the way of a fully marketed follow-on offering, within an indicative price range of 240 zloty to 270 zloty. The final sale price will be determined through a bookbuilding process that will begin on March 18, 2013, and is expected to end no later than March 21.

Santander is expected to sell not less than 195,216, constituting 0.21 percent, but up to 4.85 million shares constituting up to 5.19 percent of BZ WBK current shares outstanding. KBC plans to sell 15.13 million shares, comprising 16.17 percent of BZ WBK current shares outstanding.

Bank Zachodni WBK is one of Poland's largest banks providing a full range of financial products and services for individuals, SMEs and corporate clients.

On completion of these offerings, the free float of Bank Zachodni WBK would be 30 percent, which will allow Banco Santander to fulfill its commitment to the Polish regulator that at least 30 percent of the capital of BZ WBK is in hands of other minority investors before the end of 2014.

Banco Santander will continue to be the controlling shareholder of BZ WBK, with a stake of no less than 70 percent, following the deal.

As selling shareholders, KBC and Banco Santander will grant underwriters a reverse greenshoe option in relation to up to 10 percent of the final offering size.

KBC and Santander will each commit to be locked-up for a period of 90 days, and BZ WBK for a period of 180 days, following the closing of the offering.

In London, Banco Santander shares are currently trading at 493.5 pence, down 4.55 percent.

KBC trades at 28.78 euros, down 3.81 percent in Brussels.

by RTT Staff Writer

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