RIA NOVOSTI. Unified Bank Rossiya has become a 100% owner of Sobinbank, which was previously part of Gazprom Group, RIA Novosti reported quoting Sobinbank’s press release.

For the record, in October 2008 Gazenergoprombank acquired 100% of Sobinbank’s shareholder equity, as the latter faced financial difficulties. Since October 2008 Sobinbank had been part of Gazprom Group. The reason behind changes in Bank Rossiya’s interest in Sobinbank was “the termination of the activity carried out by the registered party (Gazenergoprombank) via reorganization in the form of a takeover by Bank Rossiya”, the press release said.

Gazenergoprombank’s takeover by Saint Petersburg-based Bank Rossiya was finalized in early August 2010. Entrepreneur Yury Kovalchuk is considered to be Bank Rossiya’s controlling shareholder, while Gazenergoprombank’s previous owners are Gazprom-affiliated concerns.

Sobinbank is a universal bank, which ranks among Top 100 Russian banks by assets. In National Bank Trust’s rating, the lender is in 66th place with assets equal to Rub 55.1 bln (as of July 1, 2010).

According to National Bank Trust’s rating, as of July 1, 2010 Gazenergoprombank’s assets stood at Rub 121.4 bln (34th place), while those of Bank Rossiya totaled Rub 100.4 bln (40th place). So, the combined bank with assets of around Rub 221.8 bln (as of July 1) now ranks 20th in National Bank Trust’s rating.