IFC, EBRD to become shareholders of Odea Bank

IFC, EBRD to become shareholders of Odea Bank

IFC, EBRD to become shareholders of Odea Bank Turkey’s Odea Bank has said it is being boosted by support from international financial institutions in a move that will take it to the next stage of growth, in a joint press release on June 27.

The IFC, a member of the World Bank Group, the IFC Financial Institutions Growth Fund (FIG Fund), a private equity fund managed by the IFC Asset Management Company (AMC), and the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD) will become shareholders of Odea Bank, a subsidiary of Lebanon’s Bank Audi Group, through a subscription of a 1 billion Turkish Lira capital increase of the lender, according to the release. 

This capital increase will provide Odea Bank with additional financial flexibility and allow it to expand its financing in the real sector in Turkey, fund large scale infrastructure projects and increase access to finance for medium- and small-sized companies (SMEs), said the company. 

Odea Bank is also planning to invest in new technologies to strengthen its digital banking network and reach 1 million unbanked people in Turkey, it added. 

As part of the capital increase, the IFC and EBRD are investing the lira equivalent of $110 million and $90 million, respectively. Some $38.5 million of IFC financing is provided by the FIG Fund, according to the release.

The remaining balance will be covered by Middle Eastern investors and Bank Audi itself. Following the capital increase, Bank Audi Group will remain a majority shareholder of Odea Bank with a stake of more than 75 percent.

Completion of the transaction is subject to regulatory approvals, including approval by the banking watchdog and other customary closing conditions.

Odea Bank operates 56 branches in 16 cities and employs over 1,500 staff as of June.

Bank Audi is advised by J.P. Morgan as its exclusive financial advisor and by Dechert as its legal counsel for English Law and by the Bilgiç Attorney Partnership as its legal counsel for Turkish Law, while the IFC and the EBRD are jointly advised by Clifford Chance as legal counsel for English Law and by the Yegin Çiftçi Attorney Partnership as their legal counsel for Turkish Law, according to the press release.