The material on this site is for financial institutions, professional investors and their professional advisers. It is for information only. Please read our Terms & Conditions, Privacy Policy and Cookies before using this site.

All material subject to strictly enforced copyright laws. © 2021 Euromoney, a part of the Euromoney Institutional Investor PLC.
Banking

Sberbank: Gref’s great expectations

Sberbank CEO German Gref says he has led Russia’s biggest bank through a thorough transformation. It has grown onto the international stage and bulked up in investment banking. What are his objectives, and how does he see its role at home and in the region?

Sberbank CEO German Gref

An entourage of Russian state capitalism passed through London and New York in April, with German Gref at its head. But this was not a Putinesque display of nationalist bravado; it was a roadtrip aimed at investors, who have warmed to Sberbank under Gref’s leadership.

Some of the world’s biggest and best-known fund managers were at the meetings. A senior banker at a rival firm says Gref "is without doubt one of the most interesting figures in global banking today".

The firm made its first international listing in London last autumn; by early 2013, Gref’s bank – formerly the Soviet Union’s savings bank – was trading at valuations higher than US lenders such as JPMorgan and Wells Fargo, at around 1.4 times book value.

Along with the rest of the Russian market, its stock fell around 10% in February and March with global oil prices. But Sberbank’s valuation multiples were still around 50% higher than those of Russia’s state-owned lender VTB, perhaps its most direct rival.

In recent years, Sberbank’s return on equity has been at the top end of the range at 20% to 30%.

You have reached premium content. Please log in to continue reading.

Read beyond the headlines with Euromoney

For over 50 years, our readers have looked to Euromoney to stay informed about the issues that matter in the international banking and financial markets. Find out more about our different levels of access below.

SUBSCRIBE ONLINE TODAY

Unlimited access to Euromoney.com and Asiamoney.com

Expert comment, long reads and in-depth analysis interviews with senior finance professionals

Access the results of our market-leading annual surveys across core financial services

Access the results of our annual awards, including the world-renowned Awards for Excellence

Your print copy of Euromoney magazine delivered monthly

£73.75 per month

Billed Annually

FREE 7 DAY TRIAL

Unlimited access to Euromoney.com and Asiamoney.com, including our top stories, long reads, expert analysis, and the results of our annual surveys and awards

Sign up to any of our newsletters, curated by our editors

LOGIN NOW

Already a user?

We use cookies to provide a personalized site experience.
By continuing to use & browse the site you agree to our Privacy Policy.
I agree