Erste Bank Hungary launches home savings bank

Analysis

Erste Bank Hungary has launched its own home savings bank, deputy head of the retail division Imre Sztanó said on Monday.

Erste aims to take 10-12% of Hungary's home savings market in the next few years, Sztanó said. Erste Home Savings Bank is expected to become profitable within five years, he added.

Erste is the third bank to enter the home savings bank market in Hungary after OTP Bank and Fundamenta-Lakáskassza.

Erste Bank Hungary has had a "good and fruitful" partnership with Fundamenta-Lakáskassza until now, but the balance of the cooperation has been upset recently, Sztanó said.

He said Erste Bank Hungary has 900,000 clients, the second-highest number on the country's banking market, and its parent is market leader on the home savings bank market in Austria.

Between 30% and 40% of Erste Bank Hungary's clients have said they want to join a home savings bank in the near future, he added.

Data from Hungary's Competition Office (GVH) show penetration of home savings banks in Hungary could rise to 20% in just a few years.

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