Sberbank looks to offload crisis collateral assets

Sberbank is looking to sell assets taken on as part of its role in bailing out companies during the financial crisis.

Sberbank CEO, Hermann Gref, told journalists on Thursday that Russia’s largest bank was looking to sell on assets acquired as part of debt restructuring at the height of the global credit crunch in late 2008 and early 2009 by the end of this year, and was already seeking buyers.

"Either we sell or agree to sell. The faster, the better," said the former Minister for Economic Development, adding "The sooner we get rid of these, any problem assets – not just the oil and gas assets – the better," and "The assets are pretty good in principle. I hope we find owners for them."

Sberbank reported last October that Sberbank Capital had received $4 billion worth of problem assets, mainly from the retail, oil, metallurgy, gold mining, and transportation infrastructure sectors. Ashot Khachaturyants, The head of Sberbank Capital said in February that his group was in talk with Sberbank about the transfer of about $10 billion in further problem assets.