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Piraeus Bank goes online to auction properties

Piraeus Bank, Greece's largest lender, is launching a new electronic platform to sell property left behind by the country's economic crisis and 24 billion euros of bad loans festering on its balance sheet.

This is the first online auction of its type to be launched in Greece, offering commercial and residential properties, amidst a massive supply of real estate arising from the country' s seven year slump.

The bank will get the ball rolling with the auction off 58 assets on on June 27 and 28 and says will also offer buyer favourable financing to help close the deal. This finance is a key issue in the Greek market where reports have been growing of a small spike in demand for property as banks keep the lending tap firmly shut.

After having been recapitalised three times during the country's economic crisis, Greek banks are struggling under the weight of some 105 billion euros of bad loans, amounting to more than one in two loans.

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Those interested in bidding must declare their interest prior to the start of the auction and bid amounts will have to commence above the starting price nominated by the lender. Bidders can then monitor the course of other bids on line. For each property auctioned, the bank says it will also provide on the site the relevant paperwork, such as engineer reports, building permits, etc.

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