Kiev-based financial group buys Ukrainian unit of Russia’s Sberbank

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The Kiev-based financial group TAS said Wednesday that it has completed a deal to purchase VS bank, the Ukrainian unit of Russia’s biggest bank, Sberbank.

The deal between TAS and Sberbank Europe AG was sealed with all necessary permits from Ukraine’s National Bank and Antimonopoly Committee, as well as the European Central Bank, TAS said in a statement.

The purchase of VS bank will strengthen the role of TAS in the Ukrainian financial market and contribute to the consolidation and stable development of Ukraine’s banking sector, the statement said.

Based in Ukraine’s western city of Lviv, VS bank operates 35 offices in 11 Ukrainian regions, with its capital assets estimated at about 142 million U.S. dollars.

In April, Sberbank officially announced its plan to exit the Ukrainian market since Ukrainian activists from a far-right political group blocked its central office in mid-March.

The activists carried out a series of attacks on Russian banks to protest against their alleged acceptance of documents issued by the self-proclaimed Donetsk and Lugansk republics in eastern Ukraine.

In the wake of the blockade, the Ukrainian government imposed sanctions on five Ukrainian subsidiaries of Russian state-run banks, prohibiting them from making any financial transactions in favor of their parent banks.

The TAS financial group is owned by Ukrainian businessman and former Deputy Prime Minister Sergiy Tigipko.

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