On November 7, 2007, after receiving final approval from the regulatory authorities, BNP Paribas completed the full acquisition of Bulgarian consumer credit leader JetFinance International through its subsidiary Cetelem.
Consumer credit specialist JetFinance International has a portfolio of around 500,000 clients. Its production and outstanding consumer credit grow by over 60% in 2006, and this trend has continued in 2007.
The acquisition was announced in the summer and finalized today. It strengthens Cetelem's No.1 position in consumer credit in Continental Europe and confirms its capacity to offer a genuine pan-European product to its distribution partners. In addition, JetFinance International will become part of the new BNP Paribas Personal Finance* business created from the merger of Cetelem and UCB activities and will therefore be the bridgehead in charge of offering a range of consumer credit and mortgages to Bulgarian households.
Central and Eastern Europe is already a key region for Cetelem: it was established in Hungary and the Czech Republic in 1996, and it also currently operates in Poland, Slovakia, Romania, Serbia, Turkey, as well as Ukraine and Russia. Cetelem is a TOP 3 consumer credit provider in the Czech Republic, Slovakia, Hungary, and Romania, and now in Bulgaria.
This strategic acquisition gives BNP Paribas access to a customer base of individuals in Bulgaria. The growth potential of this country is one of the highest in Central and Eastern Europe, with a projected GDP increase of around 5% annually between now and 2009.
Ivan Hristanov, previously Chief Operating Officer of JetFinance International has been appointed Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of JetFinance International.
* Subject to approval by members of the Works' Council meetings on 22 October 2007
About JetFinance International
Created in 2001 by Elvin Guri and Ivan Hristanov, JetFinance International is the leader in consumer credit on the Bulgarian market. With a portfolio of around 500,000 clients, JetFinance International is active in over 150 Bulgarian towns and cities, employs 800 staff, and offers its products in some 3,600 retail outlets and through its own network of branches.
A company of the BNP Paribas group, Cetelem was a pioneer in consumer credit in 1953 and in Internet credit in 1997. It is the market leader in France and Continental Europe, with operations in 29 countries on 4 continents. It has almost 60 billion euros of outstanding credit and 23,000 employees.
Cetelem is also the partner of choice for businesses, banks, and insurance companies, providing them with expertise in consumer credit.
For further information, please visit www.cetelem.com.
About BNP Paribas in Bulgaria
BNP Paribas is present in Bulgaria since 1994.
The BNP Paribas branch in Sofia is a corporate and investment bank for SMEs and major corporations as well as institutional clients, in all sectors of the economy. It offers clients customized solutions based on a comprehensive range of financing services and products provided by the investment bank.