Vienna, 28 April 2020. Wiener Privatbank saw solid business growth in 2019. Christoph Raninger, CEO of Wiener Privatbank since the start of the year, considers the bank well on track: 'Over the past two years, the bank has continuously been the target of sales rumours. A reorganisation of the bank's shareholder structure and management team has put an end to these deliberations and the bank is now again able to fully concentrate on its future positioning as a property and capital market specialist. The financial year ending 2019 has provided a solid foundation.'
Strong growth in core business boosts earnings
As at 31 December 2019, Wiener Privatbank had a balance sheet total of EUR 456 million, marking an 11% increase on the previous year's figure of EUR 411 million. Customer loans and advances were one of the key factors responsible for this balance sheet growth, which, given the strong performance in new credit business, increased by 26% to EUR 89 million. At the same time, customer deposits increased by 15% to EUR 350 million. As a result, the bank continues to have a very stable source of primary funds for financing purposes. After factoring in fund and safe custody business, the bank's managed assets increased by 16% from EUR 1,325 billion to EUR 1,535 billion. These business developments have also positively impacted the bank's earnings: year-on-year, pre-tax earnings increased from EUR 1.0 million to EUR 3.7 million and net income rose from EUR 0.6 million to EUR 2.7 million.
'The developments have shown that, notwithstanding the temporary uncertainty regarding ownership, the bank has a stable business model and a stable core customer base. This provides the groundwork for further advances in a new structure', says long-standing managing director Eduard Berger, summing up the situation.
Healthy bottom line
As at 31 December 2019, Wiener Privatbank continued to maintain strong capital ratios. The equity ratio was at 18.05% and the common equity tier 1 capital ratio (CET1) at 17.92%. The slight decline in these ratios on the year before can be attributed to credit growth. The NPL ratio remained at 0% despite a significant increase in the loan portfolio. Christoph Raninger comments as follows: 'On the strength of our capital base, we have not only gone well beyond the regulatory requirements but are also well ahead of the average for Austrian banks. The fact that there have been no defaults in our portfolio despite the growth in our lending business is a quality certificate for the business. On that account, the bank is well equipped even in times of COVID-19.'
In addition to the solid business performance, the year under review was marked deeply by a major directional decision. Persistent rumours about the sale of the credit institution making the rounds over the past two years were finally put to rest at the end of 2019 by a firm commitment on the part of Günter Kerbler, the main shareholder, to the bank and the coming on board of Arca Group as strategic investor. Both the eminent real estate investor Günter Kerbler and Slovak private equity group Arca, the new shareholder, have made out sustainable potential in the current market environment for a bank specialising in property and capital market services. The commitment to the bank and the adoption of a long-term view by the core shareholders was immediately followed up by action: the profits of the year just ended are to be retained and reinvested in the bank's future growth.
The bank's management also set out on a new course. Long-standing CEO Helmut Hardt was succeeded by seasoned banker Christoph Raninger who took over as CEO on 1 January 2020. Juraj Dvořák, originally from Arca Group, is also a new member of the management board and will be responsible for the Eastern European agendas with a special focus on the Slovak and Czech markets. Eduard Berger, a recognised capital market expert, has likewise been welcomed on board. 'As a management board team that leverages complementary strengths we are in a perfect position not only to handle the current COVID-19 situation together with our motivated colleagues but also to successfully shape the future after Corona," said CEO Raninger with respect to the new constellation.
A clearly defined value chain consisting of new and old partnerships will be of crucial importance for Wiener Privatbank's future positioning.
The real estate company ViennaEstate AG, which enjoyed close links with Wiener Privatbank up until 2018, is once again expanding its ties to the bank. As a leading real estate developer and administrator, Vienna Estate AG occupies a vantage point in the market and thus has direct access to attractive properties, including retirement investment apartments, apartment buildings or large development projects, which offer compelling investment opportunities for Wiener Privatbank customers, especially in times of low interest rates and uncertain prospects in capital markets. Depending on the customer's preferences, the bank is able to flexibly line up a wide variety of real estate investments in the form of physical objects or capital market products such as bonds or funds. By teaming up with Vienna Estate AG, the bank is providing its customers direct access to some of the safest and most sustainable asset classes currently available in the market.
The new partnership with Arca Group, which joined Wiener Privatbank as strategic investor at the end of 2019, constitutes a defining point of reference for the bank's future direction. Established as a private equity corporation, the group is invested in real estate and financial services and serves a broad network of customers in the core markets of Slovakia and the Czech Republic. Through this, Wiener Privatbank is opening up windows of opportunity to new target markets which present intriguing prospects not only on account of their geographic proximity but, as EU states, are also the best possible match for the bank's business activities in economic and legal terms. The partnership's strength lies in the fact that Wiener Privatbank now has access to Arca's far-flung sales network to sell its products and can significantly broaden its sales reach. All at once, the bank has access to interesting real estate projects in the regions of Slovakia and the Czech Republic which will now figure among the bank's expanded home markets.
Outlook 2020: Growth based on a clear vision; but the COVID-19 impact is still uncertain
Building on a healthy balance sheet with a strong capital base, Wiener Privatbank has set its sights on positioning itself as a dynamic bank wholly specialised on property and capital market expertise.
As a one-stop-shop for real estate, the bank offers an integrated combination of real-estate-related investment opportunities, services and financing from a single source and provides wholesale access to one of the most interesting and soundest investments in the market. The bank is thus looking to serve a niche that is currently untapped and could be established as a unique selling point in the market. Moreover, the bank is relying on sound capital market expertise combining professional investment advice and management with in-house fund management. No off-the-peg products, but distinct fund solutions as well as sustainable and value-based forms of investment are what it takes to ensure target-group-specific uniqueness in investment. Stock brokerage with global access to stock markets and bespoke support for issuers in the capital market round out Wiener Privatbank's custom-fit lineup of offerings. In staking its claim as a property and capital market specialist, Wiener Privatbank is setting a clear course and creating the conditions required for further growth. The close partnerships with Vienna Estate and Arca Group play a key role in these growth plans. As the leading real estate developer and administrator, Vienna Estate gives Wiener Privatbank access to premium real estate opportunities, which the bank can then offer customers and investors either physically or in the form of capital market products. In addition, the partnership with Arca Group allows the bank to add the regions of Slovakia and the Czech Republic to its home markets. As a result, the bank's customers gain access to these markets, and the bank's potential to sell products and services to customers in these regions is considerably boosted by virtue of Arca's broad customer network. Against this backdrop, there are plans to open branches in Bratislava and Prague.
However, the current situation around the COVID-19 outbreak and its medium- and long-term impact must be taken into account. The outlook for the global economy has darkened considerably since the pandemic's onset. The global efforts deployed by the governments to contain the pandemic with sometimes different strategies and packages of measures are massively impacting social life and thus directly the economy. The sharp plunge in stock markets and the jump in unemployment in March were very clear reactions. Government assistance and monetary-policy support have provided some direct relief and cast a certain safety net, but such support is known to have secondary economic effects. These and real economy effects are bound to follow and should be monitored. In any case, Austria is expected to suffer a dramatic decline in economic output in 2020.
Wiener Privatbank SE expects the temporary disruption of businesses, supply chains and sales operations, the drop in demand in many sectors, the rise of unemployment figures and a change in the general consumption and investment behaviour on account of the crisis to negatively impact the economic momentum. This will hopefully be offset by the positive effects on the economy of the support measures taken by the federal government and central banks. Given the dynamics of the crisis and the high degree of uncertainty, future developments cannot be reliably predicted. However, the general expectation is that markets will remain volatile.
CEO Christoph Raninger has put it in a nutshell: 'By positioning ourselves as a dynamic property and capital market specialist, I see Wiener Privatbank well positioned in the current market environment. As a small bank, we are able to respond to developments quickly and offer our customers flexible and personalised investment and financing solutions even in time of COVID-19. Our all-out real estate expertise sets us apart from our competitors. We leverage this strength to give our customers access to stable and value-based forms of investment, which offers actual added value especially in a volatile market as we are witnessing now. At the same time, as a capital market specialist, the opportunities we offer are geared specifically for investors and issuers interested in capital markets. We thus rely on a perfect symbiosis of 'Viennese tradition' and present-day trends. COVID-19 currently represents a challenge for us, but we have taken all the measures in good time to best protect our employees and at the same time to warrant the bank's unimpeded operation - not only with a view to weathering the crisis in good health but also with the aim of being able to offer our customers the interesting investment opportunities they are accustomed to.'
Financial indicators acc. to IFRS
January 1st to
31. December 2019
January 1st to
31. December 2018
Net interest income in EUR
Net fee and commission income in EUR
Profit or loss before tax in EUR
Net profit or loss for the period excluding minority interests in EUR
Earnings per share in EUR
Average number of outstanding shares
31. December 2019
31. December 2018
Balance sheet total in EUR
Equity in EUR (excluding minority interests)
Vienna, 25 April 2019. In 2018, Wiener Privatbank’s core business areas recorded a largely stable development. The main reasons for this were the demand for investments in stocks and funds and additional cash inflows in wealth management. Eduard Berger, member of Wiener Privatbank’s Executive Board, on this development: “Our asset management products performed very well despite 2018 having been a tough year for stock markets and received several funds awards.” The Austrian real estate market also continued to boom in 2018. “We were once again able to take advantage of this trend with respect to the sale of investment properties”, explains MMag. Dr. Helmut Hardt, also member of the Executive Board of Wiener Privatbank.
Earnings performance 2018
In 2018, Wiener Privatbank’s business recorded a largely stable development, in spite of the generally tough year for stock markets. Due to the separation of the banking and real estate business operations in 2017, a comparison with the previous year is only possible to a very limited degree.
Taking into account the above information, Wiener Privatbank’s profit before taxes decreased from EUR 24.57 million in 2017 to EUR 1.02 million in 2018. This is due to the sale of assets in fiscal 2017 and the resulting loss of income in the following years. General and administrative expenses decreased to EUR 16.48 million in 2018 (2017: EUR 19.13 million). Net income for the period attributable to the owners of Wiener Privatbank decreased from EUR 17.13 million in 2017 to EUR 0.40 million in 2018. Accordingly, earnings per share (undiluted) amounted to EUR 0.08 in the reporting year (2017: EUR 3.55).
Total assets of Wiener Privatbank under IFRS as at the 2018 reporting date amounted to EUR 411.04 million, up from EUR 492.35 million at year-end 2017. Equity (excluding non-controlling interests) decreased to EUR 43.23 million (31 December 2017: EUR 58.70 million).
The tier I capital ratio of Wiener Privatbank increased to 19.71% at year-end 2018 (31 December 2017: 17.7%), and thus continues to be above-average by banking industry standards. The total capital ratio, too, recorded a rise to 19.85% (2017: 17.7%).
Outlook for 2019
After a good start into the year 2019, Wiener Privatbank expects continuously positive developments. Wiener Privatbank’s capital market experts anticipate interesting investment opportunities to arise on European stock markets in a still volatile environment. “We will continue to pursue our strategy and keep focusing on our core business areas Private Banking, Asset Management, Capital Markets, Brokerage, Research and Real Estate Products”, conclude the two Management Board members.
Given the current market environment and the company’s consolidated position, the Management Board expects a stable performance in the core banking business in 2019.
― Pre-tax profit increase to EUR 8.47 mn (2015: EUR 4.16 mn).
― EUR 0.80 dividend per share proposed
― Outlook: Stronger market position in Private Banking after integration of the international business division of Valartis Bank (Austria) AG
Vienna, 28 April 2017. After integrating key business operations of Valartis Bank (Austria) AG, Wiener Privatbank was able to improve business volumes and increase the number of customers it looks after. Performance in the core business fields – capital market and real estate – was satisfactory according to Helmut Hardt, member of the Wiener Privatbank management board: "Interest rates continued to trend at low levels, resulting in brisk demand for our investment fund and cash inflows in our asset management in the period under review. In terms of real estate, Wiener Privatbank Immobilienmakler GmbH was able to double the sales revenue achieved in 2015. The sale of retirement investment apartments in new and period buildings continued to be a success as well. ViennaEstate Immobilien AG also set a new record in the sale of managed real estate."
For the financial year 2016, the annual general meeting will propose a dividend of EUR 0.80 per share (prior year: EUR 0.50).
Performance in 2016
In 2016, business performance at Wiener Privatbank was for the most part stable. Owing to the takeover of core operations of Valartis Bank (Austria) AG as of 1 April 2016, comparability with indicators of the previous year is only limited. In connection with the acquisition of the banking operations, the seller paid Wiener Privatbank SE a premium.
Wiener Privatbank was able to substantially up its pre-tax profit for 2016 from EUR 4.16 mn to EUR 8.47. This improvement is attributable to the increase in other operating income, which included the premium paid by the seller (from EUR 4.87 in 2015 to EUR 11.66 mn) and the rise in net fee and commission income (from EUR 3.61 mn in 2015 to EUR 3.61 mn). Interest income, on the other hand, was at EUR -0.79 mn, after EUR -0.83 mn in the previous year, primarily as a result of refinancing the real estate portfolio. General administrative expenses rose remarkably to EUR 18.74 mn following the takeover of Valartis Bank (Austria) AG (2015: EUR 11.18 mn). Net profit for the period excluding minority interests increased considerably from EUR 3.48 mn in 2015 to EUR 7.52 mn in 2016. Accordingly, earners per share (basic) amounted to EUR 1.50 in the reporting year (2015: EUR 0.81).
Wiener Privatbank's total assets under IFRS increased substantially from EUR 187.07 mn at the end of 2015 to EUR 505.49 mn as at the effective date in 2016. Due to the acquisition of assets and liabilities in the amount of EUR 302.83 mn and 303.57 mn, respectively, as per 1 April 2016 in the course of taking over the core operations of Valartis Bank (Austria) AG, comparability with indicators f the previous year is only limited. Equity (excluding minority interests) increased to EUR 39.38 mn (as at 31 December 2015: EUR 34.24 mn).
Against the backdrop of Brexit, the elections in France, Germany and the Netherlands and a reorganisation of Italy's banking sector - and possibly also forthcoming elections in this country - Wiener Privatbank expects exciting economic dynamics to play out in the financial year 2017. In the European stock markets, Wiener Privatbank’s capital market experts expect the volatile environment to throw up a number interesting investment opportunities in the course of the year. As regards Vienna's real estate investments, Wiener Privatbank reckons with an upturn in the current financial year.
In 2017, Wiener Privatbank will continue to rely on its expertise in its core business fields Capital Market and Real Estate. The integration of core business activities from the banking operations of Valartis Bank (Austria) provides a solid foundation for efforts to further strengthen and expand the company's position in the private banking market. Wiener Privatbank expects demand to continue strong in the business fields Real Estate Products & Services.
Given the marginal improvement in the market environment and the company's stronger position, the management board expects satisfactory performance in the financial year 2017. Nonetheless, positive effects from the takeover of Valartis Bank's (Austria) banking operations are only expected to be felt in subsequent years.
Vienna, 30 September 2016. Wiener Privatbank SE reported favourable figures for the first half of 2016, particularly as a result of the takeover of core business operations from the banking business of Valartis Bank (Austria) AG in Q2. Half-year profit after minority interest increased significantly to EUR 3.38 mn (1-6/2015: EUR -0.17 mn). Top priority was given to quick integration of the banking operations and all the employees into Wiener Privatbank Group, says member of the management board Helmut Hardt: "After the takeover, we successfully pooled the strengths of the two teams and were able to decidedly strengthen our position in the core business field Capital Market. Our assets under management rose to about EUR 2 bn while the number of customers grew to some 12,000." Performance in the core business field Real Estate was also favourable in the first six months of the year: "Demand for the park apartments at Wiener Quartier Belvedere designed by celebrity architect Renzo Piano was particularly strong", explains Hardt.
Performance in 1-6/2016
Net operating income picked up noticeably in the first half of 2016, rising from -1.21 to EUR 5.04 mn year on year. This improvement is attributable to growth in net interest income, net fee and commission income as well as earnings from construction and real estate business. The increase in profit was also supported by a rise in other operating result (from EUR 1.46 mn in 1-6/2015 to EUR 8.61 mn) due to the one-off effects of the takeover of core business operations from the banking business of Valartis Bank (Austria) AG. Profit before tax was EUR 4.57 mn (1-6/2015: EUR -0.34 mn) while earnings per share (basic) rose significantly from EUR -0.04 in the first half of 2015 to EUR 0.79. However, in light of the takeover of core operations from the banking business of Valartis Bank (Austria) AG, comparability with indicators of the previous year is only limited.
Wiener Privatbank's total assets according to IFRS increased sharply as a result of the takeover of core business operations from the banking operation of Valartis Bank (Austria) AG effective as of 30 June 2016, climbing from EUR 187.07 mn at the end of 2015 to EUR 547.63 mn. Equity (excluding minority interests) was up from EUR 34.24 mn as at 31 December 2015 to EUR 35.47 mn.
Outlook for 2016
Against the backcloth of the Brexit vote, numerous geopolitical hot spots and a slackening of growth in China, Wiener Privatbank expects rather subdued economic growth. In the second half of 2016, Wiener Privatbank will continue to rely on its expertise in its core business fields Capital Market and Real Estate and further expand its business activities. The takeover of core business activities from the banking operations of Valartis Bank (Austria) provides a solid foundation for efforts to markedly strengthen and internationalise the company's position in the private banking market. "Bundling the now amplified range of services into a new competence centre for private banking customers in September 2016 was an important step", says Eduard Berger, member of the management board. Wiener Privatbank expects demand to continue strong in the business fields Real Estate Products & Services. Plans are to further expand real estate agency and facility management in the real estate service sector.
By virtue of the company's stronger position, the management board expects performance in the financial year 2016 to be satisfactory. Further positive effects from the takeover of Valartis Bank's (Austria) banking operations are expected to be felt in the years ahead.
Vienna, 29 April 2016. Vienna, 29 April 2016. In defiance of the subdued economic environment in 2015, Wiener Privatbank SE was able to significantly drive up net profit after minority interest to EUR 3.48 million (2014: EUR 2.55 million). The two core business fields – capital market and real estate – turned in a satisfactory performance in the opinion of Helmut Hardt, management board member at Wiener Privatbank: "Our investment funds did exceptionally well in 2015. Achieving two-digit growth, the Wiener Privatbank European Property, Mozart One and Wiener Privatbank European Equity funds ranked among Europe's best in their respective categories in 2015. In terms of real estate, we have been successful in positioning the newly founded Wiener Privatbank Immobilienmakler GmbH as a specialist for investments in high-end apartments and apartment buildings and have continued to market our retirement investment apartments projects in both new and period buildings. Vienna Estate Immobilien AG recorded its most successful business year since it was founded."
With a view to strengthening the equity structure against the backdrop of the takeover of core business operations from the banking business of Valartis Bank (Austria), the management board has resolved to create reserves worth EUR 1.5 million and propose a dividend payment at the general meeting in the amount of EUR 0.50 per share for the financial year 2015 (prior year: EUR 0.80). As scheduled, the takeover was closed on 1 April 2016.
Performance in 2015
Wiener Privatbank was able to significantly increase net profit in the financial year 2015 from EUR 0.56 million to EUR 0.93 million. This improvement is attributable to the rise in other operating income (EUR 4.87 million, after EUR 3.97 million in 2014), on the one hand, and the pickup in net fee and commission income (EUR 3.61 million after EUR 3.46 million in 2014), on the other. However, net interest income eased to EUR 0.84 million after having turned out EUR 1.38 million in the previous year. Pre-tax profit increased – also on account of the increase in net gains and losses from financial assets – by around 48% to EUR 4.16 million (2014: EUR 2.82 million). Earnings per share amounted to EUR 0.81 (2014: EUR 0.60).
On the balance sheet date, Wiener Privatbank's total assets according to IFRS had increased slightly to EUR 187.07 million after EUR 185.00 million at year-end in 2014. Equity (after minorities) rose marginally to EUR 34.24 million (31 December 2014: EUR 33.90 million). As of the year-end 2015, the Tier 1 capital ratio of Wiener Privatbank had advanced to approx. 20.05% (31 December 2014: 15.70%) and thus continues to be above-average by banking industry standards.
In light of the expansive monetary policy and the awaited economic recovery, Wiener Privatbank is expecting a good year on the European stock exchanges. This notwithstanding, occasional periods of short-term volatility as those at the beginning of the year are always to be expected. In Vienna's market for real estate investments, Wiener Privatbank is reckoning with continued stability in price and demand levels in 2016.
In the financial year 2016, Wiener Privatbank will continue to concentrate on its core business fields Capital Market and Real Estate and on making headway in its business expansion drive. The takeover of core business operations from the banking business of Valartis Bank (Austria) AG constitutes a perfect opportunity to substantially strengthen and internationalise the position of Wiener Privatbank in the private banking market. "Our focus on real estate and the capital market will be wonderfully rounded out by the international expertise and successful fund portfolio of Valartis Bank (Austria) AG," summarises Eduard Berger, member of the Wiener Privatbank management board. In the core business area of real estate products and services, Wiener Privatbank expects to see strong demand in 2016, particularly when it comes to innovative products such as Vorsorgewohnung+ (retirement investment apartment) or the park apartment designed by start architect Renzo Piano for Wiener Quartier Belvedere. In the real estate service sector, both real estate agent and property management services will be further developed.
Given the marginal improvement in the market environment and the company's stronger position, the management board expects satisfactory performance in the financial year 2016. Nonetheless, positive effects from the takeover of Valartis Bank's (Austria) banking operations are only expected to be felt in subsequent years owing to the integration costs incurred.
Vienna, 1 April 2016. Wiener Privatbank SE resold Valartis Asset Management (Austria) Kapitalanlagegesellschaft m.b.H. ("Valartis KAG") to Semper Constantia Privatbank Aktiengesellschaft today. Wiener Privatbank SE itself had recently acquired Valartis KAG in the course of taking over Valartis Bank's banking business. The sale is part and parcel of the ongoing migration of the banking business now acquired. The purchase price was EUR 3,140,000.
Vienna, 1 April 2016. After having satisfied all the conditions precedent, Wiener Privatbank SE today finalised its takeover of Valartis Bank (Austria) AG's core banking operations in keeping with its plans. This creates a bank with total assets of around EUR 450 million, assets under management of over EUR 2.2 billion and some 12,000 clients. The takeover will allow Wiener Privatbank to considerably firm up its position in the private banking market, internationalise its business base and broaden its service and product portfolio. As part of the successful transaction closure, Wiener Privatbank issued a mandatory convertible bond in March 2016 with a volume of EUR 5.1 million to further strengthen its capital endowment.
As previously reported, the takeover encompasses the banking operations of Valartis Bank (Austria) AG and its stake in the investment company. The property at Rathausstraße 20, 1010 Vienna was bought up by a joint venture majority-owned by Wiener Privatbank SE.