People’s Bank Owners Introduce New Name and Future Plans

On March 23 Vladimer Gurgenidze, chairman of People’s Bank board of directors and the bank director general, told a news conference the renaming of People’s Bank into Liberty Bank is related to future plans. Namely, the bank is interested in expanding business abroad after it becomes one of the leading banks in Georgia, Gurgenidze noted.

People’s Bank will register its new name, Liberty Bank, this week, he added.

The new slogan of People’s Bank sounds as Everywhere for Everybody. The new conference was also showed an image-making clip on the same slogan. The main message of the clip was: freedom of choice, creativeness, uncompromising and democracy.

People’s Bank will offer universal bank products, because it is useless to select a concrete niche on the Georgian bank market and we plan to maximally penetrate all segments, Gurgenidze noted.

People’s Bank plans to introduce competitive bank products. Namely, Magic Card, which is a credit card, will be introduced in April and Liberty, a multicurrency universal account, will be presented in May, he said.

M7 has been a success for the new management of People’s Bank, Gurgenidze said.

People’s Bank will invest 8 million GEL in modernization of the network in 2010. The number of ATMs will be doubled and the internet banking service will be also introduced in July 2010, Gurgenidze said.

The bank management has provided successful work for the last 5 months, he noted.

People’s Bank assets have recorded a 30 percent rise, that is, 83 million GEL, which is a 6.5 percent share in total assets of the bank sector in the reporting period. The People’s Bank market share has grown to 4.4 percent from 3.7 percent, Gurgenidze said.

People’s Bank has issued total of 108 million GEL in individual loans for the last 6 months and the bank’s credit portfolio has showed a 21 percent rise. Deposits increased by 34 percent, Gurgenidze noted.

Nevertheless, People’s Bank has to meet the market trends and lower deposit interest rates, he added.

As reported, Liberty Capital, which has been founded by Vladimer Gurgenidze and Romanian businessman Dinu Patriciu acquired a 91.2 percent stake of People’s Bank for 15 million USD on September 19, 2009.

Dinu Patriciu told the news conference he and Gurgenidze had decided to set up an investment fund following the August 2008 developments to serve their joint values such as freedom, property protection, liberal economy, low taxes, free trade and minimum of regulations.