Bankinter completes the requirements to open a branch in Portugal after the approval of the ECB, the BdP and the ASF

The ECB, the BdP and the ASF have given the necessary authorization for Bankinter to open a Branch in Portugal

(Nota actualizada)

In the first week of January, Bankinter inaugurated its bank branch in Portugal after the European Central Bank (ECB) and the Bank of Portugal (BdP) granted the necessary authorization.

In parallel, the Insurance and Pension Funds Supervisory Authority (ASF) has authorized Bankinter Seguros de Vida, a company controlled at 50% by Bankinter and Mapfre, to constitute a Portuguese branch and to complete the purchase of the life insurance and pensions business with which Barclays operates in the Portuguese market.

This represent a previous and decisive step in order for Bankinter, once it obtains the required authorithation from the Ministry of Economy and Competitivenes, to take control, in the month of April, of the private banking, business banking and life insurances business acquired from Barclays last September. A merging process will now begin, which will last approximately twelve months, in order to integrate the staff, installations, operating systems, technological platforms, policies and business models of both banks.

During the four months since the announcement of the purchase, Bankinter has been able to confirm that businesses taken over from Barclays in Portugal constitute an excellent platform upon which to promote the internationalization of the bank and to make good use of the enormous growth opportunities offered by the Portuguese market. Bankinter has had Portugal in its sights for some time due to its proximity and potential, with an economy that has started out on the path to recovery and a financial system that benefits from greater margins than that of Spain and is currently in the process of consolidation and restructuring.

The bank is gaining a presence in Portugal through a financial institution that has now been restructured due to strict adjustments in the last two years; one which is of a feasible size, has qualified staff and a business profile and customers -strongly focused on private and corporate banking- which bear a striking resemblance to those of Bankinter. The Barclays Portugal model fits in perfectly with the Bankinter business model, focussed on mid and high income clients and companies, which is based on a multi-channel distribution model, with high levels of cross-selling and efficiency and which is guaranteed thanks to cautious and successful credit risk management.

In key figures, the retail business of Barclays in Portugal has a credit portfolio of 4,881 million euros, 2,936 million euros in assets managed off the balance sheet, a network of 84 branches, 1000 employees and more than 185,000 customers, of which 20,300 are companies. Following this, the operation will enable Bankinter to increase  its credit portfolio by 11.3% - up to 47,993 million euros -, its assets managed off the balance sheet by 15% - exceeding 23 billion euros - and its client base by 30%, reaching 812,000 customers.