Romania’s Competition Council announced that it authorized the transaction by which First Bank took over the local subsidiary of Leumi Bank.
Romanian bank First Bank, formerly Piraeus Bank, controlled by US investment fund JC Flowers, signed in April this year an agreement to acquire the Romanian subsidiary of Israeli Leumi Bank. Leumi thus leaves the Romanian market after more than a decade of activity.
Although Leumi is the largest bank in Israel, Leumi Bank Romania is a small bank that ranked 27th out of 35 local lenders, with assets of only EUR 250 million and a market share of 0.32% at the end of 2017.
JC Flowers managed to enter the Romanian market last year through the acquisition of Piraeus Bank, later renamed First Bank. At the end of September 2017, when taken over by JC Flowers, Piraeus Bank Romania had total assets of EUR 1.5 billion.
The Competition Council’s analysis has led to the conclusion that the economic concentration between First Bank and Leumi Bank does not significantly impede effective competition on the Romanian market.
(Photo source: Facebook/Bank Leumi Romania)
Romanian lender First Bank, controlled by U.S. investment fund JC Flowers, announced it signed an agreement with Israeli...