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Five applicants invited for FHB privatization consulting tender

Five applicants have been invited to tender to serve as consultant in the privatization of a majority stake in FHB Mortgage Bank, the State Privatization and Holding Company (APV) said on Tuesday.

The winner of the closed, single-round tender will organize the sale of 33,000,010 A series FHB shares, which carry voting rights of 50%-plus-one-vote, APV said. The sale could also involve the offering of a further 2,714,300 B series voting preference shares, APV said. The state owns 54.11% of FHB, including B series shares. This year Allianz Hungaria acquired 8.0086% of the bank and Silvermist Estate acquired 7.5757%. FHB had after-tax profit of Ft 3.750 billion (€13.9 million) in the first half of 2006, 17.2% less than in the same period a year earlier, the bank said in its H1 consolidated report, prepared with International Financial Reporting Standards (IFRS) and published in August. FHB attributed the fall in profits to strategy-related costs. It is expanding into a group which includes a commercial bank and covers the entire mortgage market. Narrowing margins and losses recorded on derivatives transactions also squeezed profits. FHB's consolidated total assets grew 16.7% to Ft 524.907 billion in the twelve months to June 30. (Mti-Eco)