VIENNA Aug 20 Austrian lender BAWAG PSK
is "well prepared" for the outcome of health checks
on major euro zone banks this year, Chief Executive Byron Haynes
said after the bank reported its core capital ratio had risen to
11.2 percent of risk-weighted assets in the first half.
The bank, majority owned by U.S. investor Cerberus Capital
Management, is one of six Austrian lenders undergoing
European Central Bank-led scrutiny of balance sheets before the
ECB takes on direct supervision of big lenders in November.
"We believe that we are well prepared for the announcements
towards the end of October and we are well prepared because of
the actions we have taken," Haynes told Reuters on Wednesday.
Haynes declined to go into speculation about whether
Cerberus could soon seek to exit the 3.2 billion-euro ($4.25
billion) purchase of BAWAG it closed with other investors in
2007, adding that no sale process was under way and a potential
sale was beyond management's control.
Chief Financial Officer Anas Abuzaakouk added: "Cerberus is
a financial investor. At some point there will be a
monetisation. Whether it is an IPO, a trade sale, that is
something we don't control. What we communicate to the employees
here is BAWAG's best years are still ahead of it."
BAWAG nearly doubled second-quarter net profit, but Haynes
said growth was likely to decelerate over the rest of 2014.
"We expect the second half of the year to be in line with
the first half, maybe a slightly slower run rate compared to the
second quarter annualised," he said.
(Editing by Georgina Prodhan)