ALLIANZ BULGARIA BANK INCREASES ITS EQUITY CAPITAL
Allianz Bulgaria Holding will pour additional money into its subsidiary Allianz Bulgaria Bank, in which it holds a 79.4% stake. According to Strahil Vidinov, CEO of the credit institution, at its general meeting on March 17, 2005 it will be proposed that the bank's entire profit for 2004 - BGN5.2MN - should be set aside into its Reserve Fund. The meeting will also discuss an increase of its equity capital of BGN14MN by BGN5MN to reach BGN19MN. The money will be ensured by its major shareholder - the finance group Allianz Bulgaria, whose subsidiaries will close 2004 with an aggregate profit of BGN50MN after payment of BGN6.5MN in due taxes.The capital increase is aimed at giving the bank sufficient own funds at its disposal in order to raise its credit portfolio by 45% in 2005. According to Dimiter Zhelev, Chairman of the bank's Management Board, the accents of its operation in 2005 will be household crediting and loans for purchase of vehicles. At the same time Allianz Bulgaria will still be a bank of high liquidity as we plan that extended credits should never exceed 50% of its assets, Mr. Zhelev pointed out. According to him, in 2005 the credit institution will aim to expand its market positions at the expense of attracting more money form citizens and firms. I don't believe it is necessary to collect an expensive resource by offering very high interest rates to our clients. If we imitate other banks and offer high yields, we should also have to demand higher interest on credits we allocate. That is why we have chosen another policy - to seek resource at lower interest rates and offer loans at terms that are advantageous to clients, Mr. Zhelev is adamant.