Best Bank: ING
For a bank without a single branch, ING has become impressively embedded among Germany’s homeowners. Its internet bank, ING Dirct, is now the number one provider of new mortgages in Germany, with a market share of about 10%. By a head count of customers it is Germany’s third-largest retail bank. As impressive as these numbers is the speed of ING Direct’s growth. In the past three years, the amount of new business won annually by ING Direct has grown from €500 million to around €11 billion. It is, by a distance, the world’s most successful internet bank.
ING Direct’s strategy is an unorthodox one. Instead of offering the whole spectrum of banking services, it has concentrated on select products, first in savings and then, later, in mortgages. Despite its position as the top provider of new mortgages in Germany, ING Direct claims to have only just started in this market, and plans to grow further.