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Deutsche Bank Acquires ABN Amro Commercial Banking Operations

Deutsche Bank has acquired parts of ABN Amro's commercial banking activities in the Netherlands for EUR700m in cash, as part of its strategy to expand global transaction banking services such as cash management, trade finance and trust and securities services.

The acquisition, first announced in 2008, stems from the complex carve-up of ABN Amro, which was acquired in 2007 by Fortis, RBS and Santander. ABN Amro, which was badly battered by global financial turmoil and is now owned by the Dutch government, was required by the EU Commission to sell parts of its operations.

The acquired businesses will use the Deutsche Bank brand name and become part of the firm’s global transaction banking (GTB) business. These include two corporate client units in Amsterdam and Eindhoven, 13 commercial branches that serve small and medium sized enterprises (SME), the Rotterdam-based bank Hollandsche Bank Unie (HBU).

Werner Steinmueller, head of global transaction banking and member of the group executive committee at Deutsche Bank, said: “With this transaction, the Netherlands becomes a significant commercial banking market for Deutsche Bank. This is a key step in Deutsche Bank’s strategy to expand its stable businesses and extend its presence with European SME and Midcap clients.”

With the acquisition, Deutsche Bank welcomes over 34,000 new clients and 1,300 new colleagues.

Mr Steinmueller added: “The Dutch economy has inevitably suffered in the recession, and loan-loss provisions have increased since we first announced the transaction in 2008. Such a scenario was factored in when we took our final decision on the deal last December. But the business has a stable client base with a clear potential for growth. 2010 will be a year of investing in the acquired business. We will reap the benefits in terms of profit contributions within three years,” reported The Financial Times.

Leonhard Degle, chief country officer for Deutsche Bank in the Netherlands, said: “Deutsche Bank has been active in the Netherlands for almost a century, and our long-term commitment to the country is underscored with these acquisitions. With our enhanced presence, we have an expanded platform to serve the financial needs and support the growth of the businesses locally.”

Gerard Zwartkruis, CEO of Deutsche Bank Nederland, said: “We welcome the transaction; our priority is to ensure our clients benefit and prosper. Over time, we will be offering Deutsche Bank’s range of products and services to a larger customer base, this is good news for our clients.”