A common goal: expand consumer credit in Germany
Under the terms of a deal signed on 26 February in Frankfort, the two companies jointly acquired WKV, the Munich-based financial services company specialising in consumer credit and previously owned by Reusche, itself a subsidiary of the Dresdner Group. The agreement provides for Cetelem to have a 70% stake in the company and Dresdner Bank's ownership interest 30%. The deal still must be approved by Germany's anti-trust authorities.
The two companies agreed that WKV, whose name will be changed to Cetelem Bank Gmbh, will be used as a vehicle for their partnership in the consumer credit business in Germany.
Its role will be to promote throughout Dresdner's network of bank branches, the revolving credit card, which is not widely used in Germany, and is one of Cetelem's areas of expertise. Cetelem Bank Gmbh will also be used as a launching pad, outside Dresdner's banking network, for other consumer lending activities, in particular credit at points-of-sale.
Gerard Richter, Director of Private Customer Relations at Dresdner Bank, emphasized that "the partnership with Cetelem will enable Dresdner Bank to offer its private customers innovative products and services. What's more, giving Cetelem total management responsibility for this business will allow us to refocus on our core business of financial consulting and supports our efforts to improve profitability."
Cetelem confirms its leading position in Europe
This series of deals is a milestone in the European expansion of Cetelem, which is part of BNP Paribas's Specialised Financial Services core business. Ranked number 1 in Europe in consumer credit with recognized expertise, Cetelem managed 19 billion Euros in assets as of 30 June 2000. Over the past 15 years, it has engaged in an ambitious strategy to achieve an international presence that has taken it into 19 countries. The alliance with Dresdner will give Cetelem access to the German market, one of the biggest markets in Europe. For the past 5 years now, Cetelem's revenues from outside France have risen 30% annually.
"We're delighted to be able to work with such a quality partner as Dresdner Bank and we are convinced that this deal will turn out to be a ‘win-win' strategy for both of us," said François Julien-Labruyère, Director of International Relations and member of Cetelem's Management Board.
Dresdner Bank AG, Germany's 3rd leading private banking group
With a balance sheet total of 396 846 million Euros in 1999, 51,000 employees and a presence in over 70 countries across the globe, Dresdner Bank AG is the 3rd leading private banking group in Germany. Its strategy to position itself as an "advisory bank" is based on a concept of customer-driven service focussing on quality for the 6.5 million individuals who do business with the bank worldwide.