Brussels-based financial services provider KBC has launched a public bid for the remaining 15% shareholding in DZI Insurance Bulgaria, after receiving all regulatory approvals for the move. The group already owns 85% of the shares in the Bulgarian life and non-life insurer.

<p>The public takeover bid will be launched on September 5, 2007 for a period of 28 days at a price of E96.3 per share, which is equal to the price paid for the earlier purchase. At this price, the 15% stake amounts to a total consideration of E40.2 million. Once the public bid process is completed, KBC intends to start a delisting procedure for DZI Insurance from the Bulgarian stock exchange.<br /><br />DZI Insurance provides KBC with a unique platform for KBC to enter the Bulgarian insurance market. Furthermore, it also provides the group with a platform to develop its bancassurance activities in the high-growth Bulgarian market. <br /><br />KBC has been quick to respond to Bulgaria&#0039;s entry into the EU (on January 1, 2007), becoming the first Belgian investor in the Bulgarian financial sector.</p>