Goldman, Deutsche Bank Said Near Deal for Greek Buyout Firm

Aug 05, 2014 7:00 pm ET

Aug. 6 (Bloomberg) -- The private-equity units of Goldman Sachs Group Inc. and Deutsche Bank AG are nearing an agreement to purchase the buyout arm of National Bank of Greece SA, according to two people with knowledge of the matter.

Goldman Sachs Asset Management and DB Private Equity are in talks to pay Greece’s largest lender about 300 million pounds ($506 million) for NBGI Private Equity Ltd., about a third less than the bank originally invested, said the people, who asked not to be identified because they weren’t authorized to speak publicly.

NBGI’s management, headed by Chairman and Chief Executive Officer Pavlos Stellakis, is in negotiations to remain with the London-based unit after the deal is completed, though no final decision has been made, two of the people said. The business has underperformed similar buyout firms, with 10 of its 11 funds projected to lose about 25 euros for every 100 euros invested, according to an April document outlining the sale seen by Bloomberg News.

“We’re in the final stage, but there hasn’t been any decision,” Dimitris Spyropoulos, a spokesman for Athens-based National Bank, said yesterday. Spokesmen for Goldman Sachs, Deutsche Bank and NBGI all declined to comment.

National Bank, majority owned by Greek taxpayers after a 8.5 billion-euro bailout last year, is selling assets to boost capital before European stress tests.

Stellakis has presided over the buyout arm for more than a decade and received a $3.8 million bonus in 2009 -- the same year National Bank got its first state rescue. He has properties in London, New York and the south of France, and has had luxury cars including a Bentley and two Porsches, Bloomberg previously reported.