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Banco Santander eyes KBC's Kredyt Bank

Source: Reuters - Thu 8th Sep 2011

Spain's Banco Santander is interested in buying Polish lender Kredyt Bank from Belgian financial group KBC , a move that could secure its plans to build Poland's No.3 bank, daily Dziennik Gazeta Prawna reported on Thursday.

The local daily, which did not name its sources, said Santander wants KBC to put off a planned auction of Kredyt Bank and negotiate a possible acquisition. Neither of the companies was available for immediate comment.

In May, sources told Reuters that KBC had hired Goldman Sachs and Merrill Lynch to explore a possible sale of Kredyt Bank and Polish insurer Warta later this year.

KBC agreed with the European Commission in 2009 to divest several assets after receiving 7 billion euros of state aid during the financial crisis.

Kredyt Bank would be Santander's second Polish takeover after the euro zone's top lender earlier this year completed the purchase of the country's No.5 bank BZ WBK .

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