«The Cypriot economy is a modern economy with growth dynamics and annual rates between 3.5% and 4.0 %, clearly above the European average. Its impending entry into the Eurozone will further enhance this presence, opening new horizons for the economy of Cyprus. With the multifaceted decrease in transaction costs and the upgrading of its credit ratings, being due as a result of the adoption of the Euro, Cyprus is expected to fulfill several prerequisites for it to become not only an important overseas financial centre, but also a major international business centre for the Eastern Mediterranean. It should thus be able to operate in a more decisive manner and act as basis, as the stepping stone, for investment outside Cyprus, in the direction of Europe, Africa and Asia». The above statement was made by Eurobank EFG’s CEO Nicholas Nanopoulos in Nicosia on the occasion of the official launch of the Group’s operations in Cyprus.
A delegation of senior executives headed by Eurobank EFG Chairman X. Nickitas, Chief Executive Officer N. Nanopoulos and Deputy CEO N. Karamouzis visited the island of Cyprus to attend the official launch.
During the press conference, Mr. Karamouzis presented the strategy on the basis of which Eurobank EFG is to develop its activities in Cyprus. «Expanding into the banking market of Cyprus is a step of major significance for our Group, a step that falls within the overall strategy with a view to intensifying our operations beyond the borders of Greece. The Greek and Cypriot market and economic forces can have their cooperation spectrum expand and thus act as a dynamic and reliable growth factor in the wider region of SE Europe, the Near and the Middle East. In this context, we are here to capitalize on the investment challenge with responsibility and perceptiveness that is typical of our Group’s policy», Mr. Karamouzis said.
Mr. Karamouzis also mentioned that Eurobank EFG is kicking off with 4 branches in the largest Cypriot cities and will initially focus on the following fields:
- Providing SMEs with integrated financial products and services. Currently, total corporate funding at the Eurobank EFG Group level approximates €23 billion,
- International Banking,
- Providing, through Private Banking, integrated asset management products and services for high net worth individuals. Currently, Eurobank EFG Group manages €8.3 billion for major customers and holds the leading position in Private Banking in Greece,
- Institutional portfolio asset management. The bank is the largest institutional asset manager in Greece with €43 billion in assets under management,
- Investment Banking & equity trading.
Referring on the prospects that the wider region has to offer, Mr. Nanopoulos stressed that «Our entry into the Cypriot market comes at an opportune time for both our countries. Greece and Cyprus, members of a single and enlarging European Union and the euro-zone, with stable and modern economies, strong and mature financial systems and unique geopolitical competitive advantages to offer, can act as powerful regional development poles and become financial and economic centres in the wider region».
At the press conference a survey on «The Economy of Cyprus», drafted by Eurobank EFG’s Research and Forecast Division, headed by prof. G. Hardouvelis, was also presented. The survey includes four analytical studies that elaborate on the most critical sectors of the Cypriot economy.
During its visit to Cyprus, Eurobank EFG’s top management and the head of the Bank’s operations in Cyprus, Mr. M. Louis, held a number of meetings with prominent state, government and church officials along with representatives of local business and the finance sector.
Among the members of thee delegation currently visiting Cyprus are the Group’s economic advisor Prof. G. Hardouvelis, Group’s CFO Mrs. P. Hatzisotiriou, General Manager for Corporate Banking G. Marinos, General Manager, Head of International Activities G. Pradelli, Eurobank EFG Securities’ Managing Director V. Asser, EFG Telesis Finance CEO Κ. Vousvounis and EFG Asset Management CEO Κ. Morianos.
EUROBANK EFG GROUP
Eurobank EFG Group is an international banking organization headquartered in Greece and has a leading presence in the fields of financial products and services. The bank is the second largest, in terms of market capitalization at the Athens Stock Exchange, while its total assets amount to €63 billion. It has a wide shareholder base of over 200,000. The main shareholder, with 41.5%, is EFG Group, the third largest financial group in Switzerland - following UBS and Credit Suisse.
The Group, which began operations in Greece in 1990, currently plays a leading role in the field of private banking, corporate banking, asset management, insurance services, investment banking and equity management. It employs more than 21,000 people and has a network of more than 1,500 branches and POS, both in Greece and in New Europe. By September 30, 2007 the Group’s total deposits amounted to €32.4 billion, loans to €43.1 billion and the total equity reached €5.2 billion.
At the same time the Bank expands its activities within a wider geographical region spanning from Central Europe to the Eastern Mediterranean, either by means of acquisitions of selected banking institutions or through organic growth.
Today the Eurobank EFG Group is present in Greece, Bulgaria, Romania, Serbia, Poland, Ukraine, Turkey and Cyprus, where it has invested over €2.1 billion. Outside Greece the Bank employs 11,000 people and has a network of more than 950 branches and POS.
The recent successful share capital increase by €1.2 billion will allow for organic growth to pick up speed as well as for new mergers and acquisitions in countries where the Bank is either already present, or in countries that present significant growth prospects.
Overall, Eurobank EFG addresses a market of over 200 million people with total GDP in excess of €1 trillion. The Group’s strategic objective is to position itself as the bank of first choice for all clients in each and every country it is active in, and to support sound entrepreneurial forces and households so as to actively take part in the economic growth. To achieve these goals the Bank depends on its successful business model, its modern organizational and operational structure, its customer-oriented approach, its emphasis on quality and innovation and most importantly the high standards of its human resources. It thus achieves dynamic growth, with a sense of responsibility towards clients, shareholders and the society.