Chinese firm acquires Georgian commercial bank

Updated: 2012-07-04 11:04


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TBILISI, Georgia -- China's Xinjiang Hualing Industry and Trade (Group) Co Ltd said Tuesday that it had acquired 90 percent of stake of the Georgian JSC Basisbank, thus becoming the first Chinese private enterprise to acquire a commercial bank overseas.

The acquisition was done after an agreement was reached between the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development and the bank's supervisory board Chairman Zurab Tsikhistavi on Thursday.

EBRD and Tsikhistavi, as the bank's single international shareholder and the founder, will each retain 5 percent of the equity stake.

The bank will change name and operate in Tbilisi and Kutaisi, Georgia's second largest city. Tsikhistavi will still chair the bank's supervisory board.

Founded in 1993, the Basisbank ranked 11th among Georgia's 19 existing commercial banks in terms of total assets, with an end-of-March asset value of 154 million Georgian laris ($94 million).

The bank's businesses include deposits, loans, guarantees, cash and account settlements and securities.