FRANKFURT (Reuters) - The owners of HSH Nordbank [HSH.UL] said on Sunday they had received indicative offers for the German shipping finance provider by an end-June deadline that could pave the way for an eventual sale of the bank.
“A first review of the offers shows they are a good basis on which to successfully continue to the sales process,” the German states of Schleswig-Holstein and Hamburg, which jointly hold 85 percent of HSH, said in a statement, without providing details of the offers.
Binding offers are due by the autumn, they said.
The states have to privatise the bank under European state-aid rules by the end of February 2018.
HSH, which had total assets of 84 billion euros (73.68 billion pounds) as of the end of 2016 and saw its pretax profit plummet 73 percent to 121 million euros last year, sought backing from its owners after risky assets turned sour in 2008.
It got hit further by the slump in global trade after the financial crisis and the core bank currently has 7 billion euros in ship loans on its books.
The European Commission, HSH and its owners negotiated for years over a plan to restore HSH to health and avoid future state aid.
Sources had told Reuters in April that Chinese conglomerate HNA Group and Apollo Global Management (APO.N) were looking to bid for HSH.
Reporting by Maria Sheahan; Editing by Mark Potter