(Adds details on the buyer)
MOSCOW, March 27 (Reuters) - Russia’s biggest bank Sberbank is selling its subsidiary in Ukraine to a consortium of investors, which include Norvik Bank (Latvia) and a Belarussian private company, Sberbank said in a statement on Monday.
Ukraine recently imposed sanctions on Sberbank and other Russian state-owned banks operating in Ukraine as part of a broader flare-up in tensions linked to separatist regions of eastern Ukraine which are backed by Russia.
Sberbank’s Ukrainian offices were also the target of vandalism.
“Sberbank PJSC (Ukraine) has all the necessary means to fulfill its liabilities to private and corporate clients. We hope that the decision to sell our subsidiary bank will help to unblock its offices and to renew its normal work,” Sberbank said in the statement.
Norvik Bank said in a separate statement that it and its main shareholder Grigory Guselnikov had signed an agreement on taking part in the investment consortium.
The majority owner of the consortium will be Said Gutseriyev and his Belarussian company, Norvik Bank added. Said Gutseriyev is a son of Mikhail Gutseriyev, co-owner of Russian mid-sized oil producer Russneft.
Sberbank did not disclose the price of the deal but said it was expected to close in the first half of 2017 after receiving approval by the financial and anti-monopoly regulators of jurisdictions including Latvia and Ukraine.
The sale will not have a material effect on Sberbank’s consolidated results according to international reporting standards. However, a loss on investments into the capital of Sberbank’s Ukrainian subsidiary will be reflected in its financial results under Russian accounting standards, it added.
Sberbank Chief Executive German Gref said last week the bank was looking “very actively” at options for a quick exit from Ukraine and that Sberbank’s loan-loss provisions in Ukraine made up around 70 percent of its potential losses.
Reporting by Polina Devitt; Editing by Alexander Winning