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. Last Updated: 07/27/2016

Czech Fund Sees Growth in Russia

PRAGUE -- Czech financial group PPF sees its Russian consumer lending business doubling this year and may raise capital for expansion in other less developed markets, its executive director said Tuesday.

The group, the largest Czech asset manager with $7 billion, will look for either organic growth or acquisitions in Ukraine, Vietnam, Romania, Serbia, Kazakhstan and China, Jiri Smejc said.

"We are looking at these markets, looking for chances for acquisitions or greenfield projects," he said.

Smejc said that PPF's consumer lending arm in Russia, Home Credit Finance Bank, may double its business to around $2 billion this year and continue growing by double-digit percentages in the following years.

PPF plans to launch a new, $250 million eurobond this week for the Russian unit, according to a source close to the transaction.

Smejc declined to comment on the issue but said this was not the end of PPF's debt-raising plans.