The Banker, the esteemed financial sector magazine published by the Financial Times Group, has awarded Raiffeisen Zentralbank Osterreich AG (RZB) and its subsidiary Raiffeisen International Bank-Holding AG jointly the title «Bank of the Year» in Central and Eastern Europe (CEE) for 2008. This year’s award marks the fifth time that The Banker has recognized the RZB Group as the leading bank in CEE. At a reception in London’s Dorchester Hotel yesterday evening, RZB Board Member Patrick Butler received the regional award, as well as country awards for Bulgaria, Croatia and Slovakia.
«We are honoured and delighted to have been selected again as Bank of the Year by The Banker. This prestigious award underlines our excellent strategic position in this region as well as our sustainable business model and entails an obligation to service our customers even better», stated Walter Rothensteiner, the Chairman of both RZB’s Managing Board and Raiffeisen International’s Supervisory Board.
«By providing both retail and corporate financial services and products across 17 markets, Raiffeisen International is very well diversified — and we are confident that this diversification will help us to weather the current market turbulence and emerge from it in an even stronger position», added Herbert Stepic, CEO of Raiffeisen International.
The Bank of the Year titles awarded by The Banker are among the most prestigious accolades in the financial industry and are presented for different regions, individual countries and a range of business categories. The selection process takes into account qualitative criteria such as asset growth and profitability, as well as the development and implementation of state-of-the-art technical infrastructure and future-oriented strategies.
Additional awards for Bulgaria, Croatia and Slovakia
The RZB Group's subsidiaries in Bulgaria, Croatia and Slovakia received Bank of the Year awards for their national markets in acknowledgement of the exceptional quality of the units' banking products and services. All three Network Banks have won this distinction in previous years, and Tatra banka was recognized as the leading bank in Slovakia for the second year in a row.
Raiffeisenbank (Bulgaria) E.A.D. is Bulgaria’s fourth-largest bank, with total assets of ˆ3.7 billion (as per 30 September 2008). The bank's 188 business outlets provide corporate and retail products and services to almost 650,000 customers. Raiffeisenbank (Bulgaria) won the Bank of the Year award in 2005 and 2006.
Raiffeisenbank Austria d.d. is the fourth-largest bank in Croatia, with a balance-sheet total of ˆ5.6 billion on 30 September 2008. The bank services more than 600,000 customers through 62 business outlets. The Banker previously recognized the bank's performance with a Bank of the Year award in 2006.
Tatra banka, a.s. won the Bank of the Year award for Slovakia for the second time in a row and for the fifth time overall. It is the country’s third-largest bank with assets amounting to ˆ8.7 billion at the end of the third quarter. The bank services its more than 700,000 retail and corporate customers through 159 business outlets throughout Slovakia.
Raiffeisen Zentralbank Osterreich AG (RZB) is the central institution of the Austrian Raiffeisen Banking Group, the country’s largest banking group. It is a leading corporate and investment bank in Austria and also considers Central and Eastern Europe (CEE) as its home market. RZB is the only Austrian bank with a global network of business units reaching all important finance centres around the globe. It is also present in Asia via its branches and representative offices.
Via listed subsidiary Raiffeisen International Bank-Holding AG, RZB operates one of the largest banking networks in CEE. 17 markets are covered by subsidiary banks, finance leasing companies, two representative offices and a number of financial services providers. 14.6 million customers are attended to through more than 3,100 business outlets.