Kazakhstan’s ATF-Bank plans $276 mln stock issue

Apr 22. Reuters

* ATF-Bank to issue 7.66 pct of shares
* Owner UniCredit has indicated willingness to sell

Kazakhstan's ATF-Bank plans $276 mln stock issueKazakhstan’s ATF-Bank, majority owned by Italian bank UniCredit SpA , plans to raise $276 million by issuing 7.66 percent of its ordinary shares.

ATF-Bank, Kazakhstan’s fifth-biggest lender by assets, will issue 5.01 million shares at 8,000 tenge each on the Kazakhstan Stock Exchange, the bank said in a statement on the exchange’s website, www.kase.kz.

The bank’s existing shareholders have one month to exercise their preferential option to buy the shares, ATF-Bank said.

UniCredit, Italy’s biggest bank by market value, bought a 92 percent stake in ATF-Bank for $2.1 billion in 2007.

Within a year, it had to write off more than 500 million euros from its value as the credit crunch hit Kazakhstan’s banking sector.

UniCredit said in March it would consider selling its interest in ATF-Bank should it receive a suitable offer.