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OTP Bank says it dropped bid for RBS Bank Romania

OTP Bank is no longer pursuing the acquisition of RBS Bank Romania because it could not agree with the seller on a price, reports, citing OTP’s Deputy CEO Antal Pongrácz.

OTP, Hungary’s largest lender, may consider buying two "smaller" banks in Romania as it will not give up plans to increase its market share in Romania, Pongrácz said. The bank's goal is to reach 5-10% there.

OTP is willing to acquire several smaller banks and merge them in Romania should it find none with the right size. It has done so before in Serbia where it bought more financial institutions and integrated them.

OTP was the 17th largest player in Romania’s banking sector in 2010. Based on total assets, it had a 1.2% market share, but with 5% it would already be in the top 10.

Pongrácz also said the RBS subsidiary could be worth €100-150 million ─ an asking price in this range would have been "fair", he added. However, he declined to release the information on the British bank's asking price for its Romanian unit.

OTP’s strategy is to expand its market share in countries where it is already present, but in Romania ─ where it carves out a lot smaller slice of the market then elsewhere ─ it intends to enhance its footstep primarily via acquisitions.