Berenberg Bank builds on 2009’s
Net profit for the first half increased to €32.9m from €29.0m.
Assets under management up by €1.9bn, at €23.8bn.
Quality provider reputation strengthened.
Hamburg, Germany. For the first half of 2010, Hamburgbased Berenberg Bank has succeeded in building on its record-breaking net profit from the previous year. Demand for the private bank’s services remains undiminished.
‘Despite the current climate, which is difficult for banks, our focus on providing services for our clients and our low-risk business policy enabled us to generate an excellent result,’ commented Dr Hans-Walter Peters, spokesman for the Managing Partners of Berenberg Bank. Germany’s oldest private bank posted a record-breaking net profit of €65.1m for 2009 (up 38% compared to 2008), and figures for the first six months of 2010 were at a similarly pleasing level. The net profit for the first half of the year came in at €32.9m, almost €4m above the figure for the same period of the previous year(30 June 2009: €29.0m). The group’s core capital ratio rose from 13.1% at the beginning of the year to 13.5% by the end of May, while the solvency ratio climbed from 16.5% to 16.8% for the same period.
The Bank’s company policy and its focus on low-risk transactions have been well received by clients. This has once again enabled the company to expand its existing customer relationships, as well as acquire numerous new clients. Assets under management increased by €1.9bn for the first six months of 2010, rising faster than for the full year of 2009, when growth totalled €1.6bn. As of 30 June 2010, Berenberg had assets amounting to €23.8bn on its books.
‘As a private bank, we are able to focus on areas where we can maintain our image as a quality provider and offer our clients value add,’ commented Dr Peters.
- In Private Banking, Berenberg was named the best provider in Germany by the well-respected Euromoney Private Banking Survey 2010. The bank has nine sites throughout Germany, ensuring that clients receive a close, personal service. A branch opened in Salzburg before the end of 2009, which is also proving very popular. Dr Peters explained: ‘We see ourselves as an asset manager who safeguards and multiplies assets, after allowing for inflation, over a very long period of time.’ With this judicious approach to asset management, which capitalises on opportunities, the Bank has once again succeeded in generating value add – even in this challenging year on the capital market – and thereby gaining a large number of new clients.
- In Investment Banking, the Bank was rated number one in research, sales and corporate access among German small and mid-caps in the 2010 Thomson Reuters Extel Survey. ‘Berenberg concentrates on services and customer business in Investment Banking too – we hardly enter into any risks here.’ The Bank conducts its Europe-wide research from its London office, while its sales activities are managed decentrally from sites in London, Hamburg, Paris and Zurich. Equity trading is conducted exclusively in Hamburg. During the first half of the year, the business area established a Strategic Advisory segment, which pools advising on capital market issues (corporate broking), transaction advice (implementing M&A and capital market solutions) and industry expertise. ‘We now employ 25 specialists in this segment, mainly at our Frankfurt office. In the start-up phase alone, demand for these services has been very positive, and we expect to see substantial growth here in the second half of the year,’ commented Dr Peters.
- In Asset Management, Berenberg specialises in quantitative strategies, eg to hedge market price risks or to generate additional revenue, along with optional total return concepts and carefully developed strategies for the selection of equities and bonds. The first half of 2010 was the most successful to date in this business area, and institutional investors have already awarded a number of large contracts for the second half of the year. Here too, Berenberg utilises its expertise to offer tailored solutions. For instance, with the Berenberg Currency Alpha UI, the Bank now manages Germany’s largest currency fund.
In Commercial Banking, the Bank occupies high-yield niches, eg in operational shipping or business with China.
‘Our company policy, based on continuity and stable growth, also makes us a very attractive employer. We have interesting roles to offer and have been able to recruit excellent members of staff for our customer advisory team, as well as for areas such as research and M&A,’ said Dr Peters. The Bank’s workforce has grown from 894 to 929 since the beginning of the year.
‘By purchasing the stake previously held by Nord/LB (25%), we have been able to further strengthen our position as an owner-managed private bank,’ added Dr Peters. The family and Managing Partners now hold 37%, PetRie Beteiligungsgesellschaft mbH (Dr Hans-Walter Peters [Managing Director], Hendrik Riehmer) holds 21%, Christian Erbprinz zu Fürstenberg has a 15% stake, Jan-Philipp Reemtsma owns 15% and the Belgian firm Compagnie du Bois Sauvage accounts for 12%.
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Director Corporate CommunicationKarsten Wehmeier
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