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CEE's best bank transformation 2018: Raiffeisen Bank International

Awards for Excellence 2018

Many banks in CEE have been forced to restructure in the wake of the succession of crises that have impacted the region over the last decade, but few have managed a turnaround as fast and effective as that implemented by Raiffeisen Bank International (RBI) over the past three years.

The Austrian group announced plans for an overhaul of its CEE network in February 2015, after turmoil in key markets, including Russia and Ukraine, forced it into its first-ever full-year loss and a depleted capital base drew unwelcome attention from regulators in Vienna and Frankfurt.

The restructuring strategy, formulated by former chief executive Karl Sevelda, called for the disposal of non-core assets in the US and Asia, a big reduction of exposure in riskier markets such as Ukraine and Russia, and the sale of RBI’s subsidiaries in Slovenia and Poland.

The main objective of the transformation was to boost RBI’s CET1 ratio from a meagre 10% in March 2015 to 12% by the end of 2017.

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