RBC: Keeping it organic
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RBC: Keeping it organic

With asset prices high, RBC has made a virtue of a focus on the organic build of its footprint, with tech as important as ever.

Records are getting to be the norm for RBC – it posted another best-ever set of earnings for its 2018 fiscal year, with earnings up 8%. Its return on equity for the full year was 17.6%, well in line with the 16%-plus target that it set at the end of 2016 as strong earnings have been coupled with share buybacks.

The growth story at RBC is usually the US, which it regards as its second home market. But in 2018 that hasn’t been the only area of progress. The bank has been building its capital markets coverage teams in the UK and continental Europe, adding senior bankers throughout the year. Overall it has added 20 managing directors to its M&A and ECM coverage effort outside Canada.

“Growth in the US remains a top priority and also in the UK, but we’re also enhancing our existing footprint in Frankfurt and Paris to serve clients in a post-Brexit environment,” says Rod Bolger, CFO of RBC.

That said, the US continues to increase in importance for the group. Five years ago revenues from there accounted for 18% of the bank’s total, now they are 23%.

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