Commerzbank: sells its Hungarian subsidiary to Erste Bank more

Commerzbank AG will sell its 100% subsidiary Commerzbank Zrt. at Erste Bank Hungary Zrt. The two banks today signed a contract to this effect. As part of its “Strategy 2024”, Commerzbank announced in February that it would adapt its presence abroad. “We are constantly aligning our international network with the needs of our main customers and we focus on international companies with reference to Germany. We will continue to be the strong international banking partner in the most important trade corridors of the German economy, but we will need less clean locations than before, ”explained Commerzbank Chairman Manfred Knof .

The transaction in Hungary is still subject to the approval of the antitrust and banking supervisory authorities. It was agreed not to disclose the purchase price. The closing of the sale and therefore the start of the operational implementation of the transaction is scheduled for the second half of 2022. At the same time, a comprehensive cooperation agreement signed between Commerzbank and Erste Group will also enter into force. Through this partnership, Commerzbank will be able to offer its corporate clients easy access to selected markets in Central and South East Europe through its cooperation partner Erste Group. Commerzbank will remain present in Eastern Europe with its own offices in Poland, the Czech Republic and Russia.

Focus on customer orientation

Budapest-based Commerzbank Zrt. Was founded in 1993 as one of the first branches of West German banks in Hungary. During its almost 30 year history, the Hungarian subsidiary of Commerzbank has successfully established itself in the market with a full range of products for corporate clients. In addition to international clients, the Commerzbank subsidiary serves Hungarian SMEs and large clients with a team of around 100 employees. The main income is generated by credit and trade finance and foreign exchange activities. The bank is profitable and its total assets were around 400 billion HUF (around 1 billion euros) in 2020.

Michael Kotzbauer, Member of the Board of Directors responsible for the Business Clients Corporate segment, said: “With the sale we become more efficient and with the cooperation agreement we will continue to guarantee our clients access to the Hungarian market through Erste Grouper. ”Kotzbauer added:“ We are sure that with Erste Bank Hungary Zrt. We have found a buyer who is close to us in terms of culture, offers products and services that are convincing for our clients and with whom we can perform a smooth transition for all involved in a cooperative manner.

Erste Bank Hungary covers the full spectrum of financial services. Measured by the number of customers, branches and ATMs, it ranks among the top three banks in Hungary. Erste Bank Hungary has been a member of the Erste Group, one of the largest providers of financial services in the eastern part of the EU, since 1997.

Bernd Spalt, Chairman and CEO of the Erste Group: “This acquisition is an important step for our corporate activity in Hungary and perfectly complements our existing customer base in this segment. In addition, it will enable our customers to benefit from the excellent product knowledge, particularly in the areas of treasury management and trade finance, guaranteed by Commerzbank’s solid experience in Hungary. Following our takeover of Hungarian online broker Random Capital earlier this year, this new acquisition marks a further step in our pursuit of a growth strategy objective in Central and Eastern Europe. ”

Rationalization of the foreign network in progress

For Commerzbank, the sale of its Hungarian subsidiary is an additional step in the strategic rationalization of its presence abroad. The Bank plans to leave 15 sites abroad by 2024. In Europe, these are offices in Barcelona, ​​Bratislava, Brussels and Luxembourg and, in Asia, Hong Kong. The Dubai office will continue to be a representative office in the future. In addition, the network of international correspondent banks will be reduced from around 1,600 to around 1,300. The Bank had initially planned to withdraw from 3 sites during the current year.

In the first nine months, however, the sites in Baku, Belgrade, Kuala Lumpur and Jakarta have already been closed. Present in nearly 40 countries in the future, the Bank will remain present wherever it is important to its clients.

press contact
Monika Arens +49 69 136-29673
Erik Nebel +49 69 136-44986

About Commerzbank
Commerzbank is the leading bank of the German Mittelstand and a strong partner for around 30,000 corporate client groups and around 11 million private and small business clients in Germany. The two business segments of the Bank – Private and SME Clientele and Corporate Clientele – offer a comprehensive portfolio of financial services. Commerzbank handles around 30 percent of Germany’s foreign trade and has an international presence in around 40 countries in the corporate client sector. The Bank focuses on the German Mittelstand, large companies and institutional clients. As part of its international activities, Commerzbank supports customers with German connectivity and companies operating in selected growth sectors. Following the integration of Comdirect, private and small business customers benefit from the services offered by one of the most advanced online banks in Germany, combined with personalized advice on site. Its Polish subsidiary mBank SA is an innovative digital bank serving around 5.5 million private and business customers, mainly in Poland, but also in the Czech Republic and Slovakia. In 2020, Commerzbank generated gross sales of approximately € 8.2 billion with nearly 48,000 employees.

Disclaimer and forward-looking statement
This press release contains forward-looking statements. Forward-looking statements are statements that are not historical facts. In this press release, these statements relate to, among other things, the expected future business of Commerzbank, expected efficiencies and synergies, expected growth prospects and other opportunities to increase the value of Commerzbank as well as future financial results. expected restructuring costs and other financial and information developments. These forward-looking statements are based on management’s current plans, expectations, estimates and projections. They are subject to a number of assumptions and involve known and unknown risks, uncertainties and other factors which may cause actual results and developments to differ materially from future results and developments expressed or implied by such forward-looking statements. These factors include financial market conditions in Germany, Europe, the United States and other regions from which Commerzbank derives a substantial share of its revenues and in which Commerzbank has a substantial share of its assets, the development asset prices and volatile markets, in particular due to the current European debt crisis, potential borrowers or commercial counterparties defaults, the implementation of its strategic initiatives to improve its business model, reliability its policies, procedures and methods for managing risks, risks resulting from change and other risks. Forward-looking statements therefore speak only as of the date on which they are made. Commerzbank has no obligation to update or issue revisions to any forward-looking statements contained in this release to reflect events or circumstances after the date of this release.

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Laura T. Thrasher