MOSCOW, Dec 8 (Reuters) - Russia's central bank is looking
for an investor in bailed-out Otkritie bank, but has drawn a
blank with an approach to internet giant Yandex, two
sources close to the matter told Reuters.
Otkritie, once Russia's biggest private bank, was bailed out
by the central bank in 2017 along with two other private banking
groups. All three were struggling with mounting bad assets and a
lack of capital.
The central bank plans to sell Otkritie, in full or in
parts, either directly or via an initial public offering in
2021-2022 to recover some funds spent on the bailout.
Two state bankers told Reuters the central bank had started
to look for potential investors for Otkritie and had approached
Yandex asking it to consider buying the bank, but that the
company had shown no interest.
Yandex, which was in talks to buy online bank Tinkoff in a
$5.5 billion cash-and-share deal earlier this year, wants to
develop a banking business on its own after the deal with
Tinkoff fell apart, the sources said.
In a statement to Reuters, Yandex said it was not, and had
not been, in talks to buy Otkritie from the central bank.
The central bank and Otkritie did not reply to Reuters
requests for comment.
(Reporting by Tatiana Voronova
Additional reporting by Elena Fabrichnaya and Polina Nikolskaya
Writing by Katya Golubkova
Editing by Mark Potter)