ATHENS May 3 Greece's third-largest lender
Eurobank will report losses again this year and
gradually return to profit in 2015, its chief executive said in
an interview with a Greek newspaper.
Eurobank, which lost 1.15 billion euros last year hurt by
provisions for bad loans, became Greece's first bailed-out
financial institution to return to private control after raising
2.86 billion euros from international investors.
"2014 will be a year of restructuring during which we will
continue to show losses but at the same time set the foundations
which will lead us to a gradual return to profitability in 2015,
to a significant pick-up in 2016 and full growth from 2017," its
CEO Christos Megalou told Kathimerini newspaper.
Growing confidence that crisis-hit Greece is turning the
corner towards recovery, has helped its top banks tap markets
via share and bond issues. But a six-year recession at home has
made it hard for borrowers to service their loans.
Megalou said that in 2014, Eurobank would focus on the
management of its non-performing loans and boost efforts to cut
its operational costs in Greece and abroad. He added the bank
plans to sell its insurance arm Eurolife ERB, and its stake --
33.9 percent -- in Eurobank Properties.
Asked how the bank would react if an October EU stress test
showed it will need extra capital, he said:
"I'm certain the results of the EU-wide stress test will be
(Reporting by Renee Maltezou; Editing by Stephen Powell)