The PPF Group, founded and owned by Czech billionaire Petr Kellner, plans to sell its 49 percent stake in Generali PPF Holding, an insurance joint venture PPF established with Generali, which owns the majority stake. Kellner is also in talks to sell his stake in the Russian insurer Ingosstrakh to VTB bank for Kč 10 billion, the server regiony24.cz reported Wednesday. Generali PPF Holding is currently valued at a little over €23 billion.
With a large share flotation looming VTB, Russia’s second-largest state-controlled bank, has perturbed investors by acquiring the distressed Bank of Moscow. VTB Group’s CEO Andrei Kostin has responded by promising the bank will make no more investments in the mid-term. A month or two ago Kostin was talking about plans for large-scale investments in Russia and Home Credit was reportedly a target.
Police in Moscow conducted searches of three offices of the bank Mosstroiekonombank as part of an investigation into a $15 million “loan” provided by an investment firm registered in the name of a long-term top manager in the PPF Group, Martin Schaffer. The borrower, who operated under a false name and was arrested in March this year, has not returned the money.