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Would you buy this bank for a dollar?

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Would you buy this bank for a dollar?
Photo: EPA/BARBARA GINDL
20:59 CET+01:00
According to a report from Reuters, a consortium including U.S. investor Excellere Capital Group is seeking to acquire the 'bad bank' formed as part of the process of disposing of the assets of the failed Austrian bank, Hypo Alpe Adria.

The Austrian finance ministry claimed it had not yet received an offer from the group, although Excellere informed reporters that they had submitted a bid - consisting of a symbolic one euro - via email at the end of 2014.

The government will decide early this year about the future of the specialized company, known as Heta Asset Resolution, which was set up to handle toxic assets and bad debts belonging to Hypo after the bank was nationalized in 2009.

According to Reuters, Excellere Capital describes itself on its website as an investment banking firm with "a direct investment capability in addition to the capacity possessed by its client base".

Hypo Alpe Adria announced 30 October 2014 that it would sell its Balkan subsidiaries to major US investment fund Advent International. A minority share will go to the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD), the development bank for Central and Eastern Europe.

Headquartered in Klagenfurt, Hypo had overexpanded in Balkan countries, where it had financed high-risk credits. Following the decision on the sale, the remaining part of the bank will be wound down as a state-owned bad bank with assets worth 17 billion euros (22 billion dollars).

The price for the sale of the Balkan operations was not disclosed. The deal is pending approval by Advent's and EBRD's boards.

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