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21.4.2017 - UniCredit Bank employees care about the lives of small children

Prague, 21 April 2017 - This is according to the results of the fourteenth annual Gift Matching Program, a philanthropic initiative organised by UniCredit Foundation in 2016. Gift Matching Program enables the bank’s staff to support a non-profit organisation of their choice by fundraising organised by the employees themselves. Subsequently, UniCredit Foundation rewards their efforts and motivation to support local communities by doubling the financial amount of individual fundraising collections.

In 2016, UniCredit Foundation registered more than 11,000 donations from the Group’s staff and the total amount raised approached EUR 2.5 million. The money is going to be used in 449 projects. Together with the Group’s employees, UniCredit Foundation has supported more than 5,000 projects since 2003, donating a considerable amount of EUR 45 million in total.

 

In the Czech Republic, 86% more employees participated in the Gift Matching Program than last year. They supported a total of 24 projects of non-profit organisations of their choice, with the amount raised being equal to as much as EUR 23,706.  UniCredit Foundation has doubled their donations. Increases in the statistics of this program show that the bank’s employees care about the quality of life of those who are reliant on the help of others.   

 

The fundraising collections mostly focus on the support of projects which help small children with different forms of disability, children growing up in disadvantaged families or people socially reliant on the help of others.

 

UniCredit Bank employees in the Czech Republic supported the following non-profit organisations:

 

  • Dejme dětem šanci, o.p.s.
  • Nadační fond N
  • Centrum paliativní péče
  • Fond ohrožených dětí – ZDVOD Klokánek
  • Liga proti rakovině Praha z.s.
  • Arcidiecézní charita Praha
  • Nadační fond LA VIDA LOCA
  • HELPPES – Centrum výcviku psů pro postižené, o.p.s.
  • ČLOVÍČEK / ONE LITTLE
  • Domov Laguna Psáry
  • Důstojně pro všechny
  • Domov pro osoby se zdravotním postižením Rudné u Nejdku
  • Mluvte s námi, z.s.
  • Malíček, z.s. and other….

 

 Maurizio Carrara, Chairman of UniCredit Foundation comments on the results achieved in 2016: “The UniCredit staff continue to demonstrate their commitment and their spirit of solidarity. By supporting the work of non-profit organisations across the globe, they are contributing to a society which is alive, productive and, perhaps most importantly, united. For this reason, for 14 years, we have been supporting non-profit organisations which help disadvantaged groups of the society improve the quality of their life.”

 

 Enquiries:        Petr Plocek, Press Spokesperson of UniCredit Bank Czech Republic and Slovakia

                        E-mail: petr.plocek@unicreditgroup.cz

                        Tel. No.: 606 694 156

24.3.2017 - Radek Hrdlička is the new Head of MIDCAP & SME Corporate Clients at UniCredit Bank

Prague, 24 MarchRadek Hrdlička (46) is the new Head of MIDCAP & SME Corporate Clients. In the newly created office, he is in charge of coordinating all business units of MIDCAP & SME Corporate Clients in the Czech Republic and Slovakia.

Radek Hrdlička is the best choice for the management of sales of corporate clients. During his twenty-year career at UniCredit, he has gained valuable experience in financing of leading corporates and developing commercial relations. He will capitalise on his experience in this new position. UniCredit Bank is one of the top players in corporate finance, further dynamically bolstering its position.

 

Radek Hrdlička commenced his career at UniCredit Bank in 1996, working as a credit specialist. He later became an advisor for corporate clients. From 2007, he was a leader of a sales team for large corporate clients. In this position, he managed a team of salesmen and developed commercial relations between the bank and its top corporate clients.

 

Hrdlička graduated from the Faculty of Electrical Engineering at the Czech Technical University. In 2008, he also completed a Master's degree in management at the Italian SDA Bocconi. He speaks English, German and Russian.

 

 

Enquiries:              Petr Plocek, Press Spokesperson of UniCredit Bank Czech Republic and Slovakia

                                E-mail: petr.plocek@unicreditgroup.cz

                                Tel. No.: 606 694 156

 

8.3.2017 - Two thirds of the Czechs contemplate switching loans. UniCredit Bank is going to offer them the Presto Loan – Consolidation of Loans with an unrivalled interest starting from just 1.4% p.a. subject to due repayment.

Prague, 8 March UniCredit Bank introduces a revolutionary offer of PRESTO Loan – Consolidation of Loans. Subject to due repayment, clients can get a bonus of up to CZK 150,000, obtaining unrivalled interest rates starting from just 1.4% p.a. According to the current survey of UniCredit Bank, up to two thirds of borrowers contemplate switching lenders. When consolidating, the Czechs want to reduce both their monthly instalment and the total cost of repayment.

 

“We are going to offer historically lowest rates for consolidated consumer loans. Anyone contemplating switching loans can easily figure out that loans do not have to be expensive. When borrowers make due repayments and adhere to their repayment schedule, they are going to save a considerable amount of money,” says Ondřej Makovec, Consumer Loans Manager at UniCredit Bank.

 


Clients who consolidate loans over CZK 200,000 with UniCredit Bank get a CZK 50 thousand bonus after repayment of their loan. As for loans over CZK 600 thousand, clients can get a bonus of up to CZK 150 thousand. Practically, any client who switches loans as well as anyone refinancing bank overdraft or credit card and supplements the rest of his/her target volume by new funds for anything can get a bonus of up to CZK 150,000. Clients can easily obtain the favourable conditions at all branches of UniCredit Bank or UniCredit Bank Expres.

 

Finparada

By switching loans, we mainly want to save money; the demand is increasing dramatically


The Czechs are increasingly concerned about how to get better conditions for their consumer loans. 76% of the Czechs wants to save their cost. Therefore, the number of clients who are already actively addressing loan consolidation or switching (from 17 to 29%) as well those who are contemplating using this service (from 27 to 34%) has been sharply rising over the last three years. Overall, almost two thirds of borrowers are contemplating switching their loans (63%)

 

Finparada

Notes for editors

The UniCredit Bank survey was performed in February 2017 and November 2014 by DataCollect and Ipsos on a sample of 525 respondents aged 18 to 65 repaying consumer loans.

 

Enquiries:          Petr Plocek, Press Spokesperson of UniCredit Bank Czech Republic and Slovakia

                        E-mail: petr.plocek@unicreditgroup.cz

                        Tel. No.: 606 694 156

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24.1.2017 - PRESTO Loan by UniCredit Bank is the best loan in the Financial Product of the Year competition. Also, Mortgage has scored high.

Finparada

Prague, 24 January UniCredit Bank has once again confirmed its strong position in loan products. In the Finparáda.cz – Financial Product of 2016 competition, it ranked first in the category of general-purpose consumer loans with its PRESTO Loan. Moreover, it also ranked third in the category of Mortgages. Last year, the bank introduced several successful innovations for general-purpose loans; it has introduced the possibility of financing housing with a PRESTO Loan up to the historically lowest interest rates on mortgages with 3 to 10-year fixations.

 

„We aim to offer our clients innovative and comprehensible products under favourable conditions, whether these be low interest rates, extended repayment of loans to 96 months or the possibility of a comfortable and fast taking out of loans or mortgages fully online. Given the severe competition, the success of the general-purpose PRESTO Loan and the Mortgage shows that not only experts, based on an analytical comparison, appreciate our products but that it is mainly the clients who prefer our consumer loans. I am proud of UniCredit Bank repeatedly ranking highest in consumer loan competitions,“ says Giovanni Guidi, Director of Retail & Private Banking of UniCredit Bank..

 

Owing to the general-purpose PRESTO Loan and mortgages, UniCredit Bank helps its clients finance their needs, wishes or dreams of housing. The bank offers tailor-made loans, which can be taken out promptly and easily at branches or online, as well as low interest rates, e.g. in case of consolidation or transfer, the interest rates start from 4.9% p. a. and from 1.69% p. a. on mortgages. Moreover, clients may also achieve significant savings in monthly instalments of their existing loans, bank overdrafts or credit cards when they consolidate them or transfer them to UniCredit Bank.

 

The prestigious Financial Product of the Year” competition has been organised for the sixth time by the Finparáda.cz portal, which has been focusing in the long run on financial products and banking services and their analytical comparison.

 

Enquiries:                  Petr Plocek, Press Spokesperson of UniCredit Bank Czech Republic and Slovakiaia

                                e-mail: petr.plocek@unicreditgroup.cz

                                tel: 606 694 156

 

19.1.2017 - #InvestEU: EIF and UniCredit agreement to provide EUR 160 million for innovative SMEs

Prague, 19th January  – The European Investment Fund (EIF) and UniCredit have signed an InnovFin SME guarantee agreement to enhance access to finance for innovative small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) and mid-caps in eight countries. This transaction benefits from the support of Horizon 2020, the EU's Framework Programme for Research and Innovation, and the European Fund for Strategic Investments (EFSI), the heart of the Investment Plan for Europe.

This agreement will allow UniCredit, via its banks, to offer additional financing worth EUR 160 million to innovative companies in Bosnia and Herzegovina, Bulgaria, Croatia, Czech Republic, Slovakia, Hungary, Romania and Serbia.

The banks in Bosnia and Herzegovina and in Serbia will benefit from the support of a guarantee provided by EIF and backed under Horizon 2020, the EU's Research and Innovation programme, while the guarantee agreements with the banks in Bulgaria, Croatia, Czech Republic, Slovakia, Hungary and Romania will be backed by the Investment Plan for Europe.

European Commission Vice-President Jyrki Katainen, responsible for Jobs, Growth, Investment and Competitiveness, said: “This agreement is excellent news for innovative small companies across these eight countries. The additional EUR 160 million in financing that will be made available from this agreement demonstrates that the Investment Plan is playing a crucial role in achieving the Commission's objective of providing the support that will allow SMEs to create jobs, innovate and grow.”

EIF Chief Executive Pier Luigi Gilibert added: “This umbrella SME guarantee agreement will be instrumental in helping countries in the Western Balkans and Eastern European regions to foster innovation and entrepreneurship. I am confident that UniCredit’s network of banks in these eight countries will target high-growth potential companies, which will be able to translate the additional financing received into growth and job creation.”

Carlo Vivaldi, Head of CEE Division of UniCredit, said: “We are strongly committed in supporting SMEs companies in Central and Eastern Europe (CEE). Thanks to the new umbrella facility and our extensive network we can further facilitate the development of innovative SMEs across different countries where our clients will have easier access to finance and will benefit of better pricing.”

The transaction reflects the EU's commitment to rapidly launch concrete initiatives aiming at accelerating lending and guarantee transactions capable of boosting jobs and growth in the EU.

 

About EIF

The European Investment Fund (EIF) is part of the European Investment Bank Group. Its central mission is to support Europe's micro, small and medium-sized businesses (SMEs) by helping them to access finance. EIF designs and develops venture and growth capital, guarantees and microfinance instruments which specifically target this market segment. In this role, EIF fosters EU objectives in support of innovation, research and development, entrepreneurship, growth, and employment. More information on EIF's work under EFSI is available here.

 

About UniCredit

UniCredit is a strong Pan-European Group with a simple commercial banking model and  a fully plugged in Corporate & Investment Bank, delivering its unique Western, Central and Eastern European network to its extensive 25 million strong client franchise.
UniCredit  offers local expertise as well as international reach and accompanies and supports its clients globally, providing clients with unparalleled access to leading banks in its 14 core markets as well as an another 19 countries worldwide. UniCredit  European banking network includes of Italy, Germany, Austria, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Bulgaria, Croatia, Czech Republic, Hungary, Romania, Russia, Slovakia, Slovenia, Serbia, Turkey.

 

About the Investment Plan for Europe

The Investment Plan focuses on strengthening European investments to create jobs and growth. It does so by making smarter use of new and existing financial resources, removing obstacles to investment, providing visibility and technical assistance to investment projects. The Investment Plan is already showing results. The projects and agreements approved for financing under EFSI so far are expected to mobilise over EUR 164 billion in total investments across 28 Member States and to support more than 388 000 SMEs. On 14 September 2016, the European Commission proposed extending EFSI by increasing its firepower and duration as well as reinforcing its strengths. Find the latest EFSI figures by sector and by country here. For more info, see the FAQs.

 

About InnovFin

The InnovFin SME Guarantee Facility is established under the “EU InnovFin Finance for Innovators” initiative backed by Horizon 2020. It provides guarantees and counter-guarantees on debt financing of between EUR 25,000 and EUR 7.5 million in order to improve access to loan finance for innovative small and medium-sized enterprises and small mid-caps (up to 499 employees). The facility is managed by EIF, and is rolled out through financial intermediaries – banks and other financial institutions – in EU Member States and Associated Countries. Under this facility, financial intermediaries are guaranteed by EIF against a proportion of their losses incurred on the debt financing covered under the facility.

 

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Press contacts:

EIF: David Yormesor

Tel.: + 352 24 85 81 346, e-mail: d.yormesor@eif.org

 

UniCredit Group: Media Relations

Tel.: + 39 02 886 23 569, e-mail: mediarelations@unicredit.eu

 

European Commission: Enda McNamara

Tel.: + 32 (0)2 29 64 976, E-Mail: enda.mcnamara@ec.europa.eu

4.1.2017 - Ljubisa Tesic appointed as new Chief Financial Officer and Board Member at UniCredit Bank

Prague, January 4 - Ljubisa Tesic (40) has been appointed as new Chief Financial Officer, as well as Member of the Board of Directors at UniCredit Bank. With his twenty years of experience in banking in several European countries, Tesic replaces Gregor Hofstaetter-Pobst. Within UniCredit Group, Gregor Hofstaetter-Pobst has been appointed as Chief Financial Officer of the Austrian Bank Austria.

 

Ljubisa Tesic held the office of Chief Financial Officer and Board Member in the Bosnian UniCredit Bank Banja Luka and the Hungarian UniCredit Bank Hungary. He spent three years in each of these banks of UniCredit Group.

 

I am really glad that Ljubisa Tesic has joined our team at UniCredit Bank Czech Republic and Slovakia, where he can build on his extensive professional and managerial experience,” says Jiri Kunert, CEO and Board Chairman at UniCredit Bank Czech Republic and Slovakia.

 

Ljubisa Tesic started his career in HVB Germany in his home country of Germany in 1996. Within the bank, which is now part of UniCredit Group, he held various positions within Private Banking, Risk Management (in London), Controlling, Strategic Projects, and Mergers & Acquisitions. Thereafter, he was appointed as a Senior Manager with responsibility for Strategic Development and M&A in Bank Austria Creditanstalt in Vienna, then as Managing Director of UniCredit Markets & Investment Banking at UniCredit Bank AG (in Munich and Vienna).

 

Ljubisa speaks German, Bosnian, Croatian, Serbian, and English. He studied business management at University of Banking in Frankfurt am Main, Germany (Hochschule für Bankwirtschaft, HfB – now Frankfurt School of Finance & Management). He is married with three children.

 

 

Enquiries:              Petr Plocek, Press Spokesman of UniCredit Bank Czech Republic and Slovakia

                               E-mail: petr.plocek@unicreditgroup.cz

                               Phone: 606 694 156                     

19.12.2016 - Pay with your thumb! UniCredit introduces fingerprint payments in Smart Banking

Prague, 19. DecemberSanta Claus does not have to bring gifts only on Christmas Eve The red and white logo of UniCredit is no coincidence - the bank has Christmas presents for you before the Christmas Eve this year. You do not have a tree? It doesn’t matter, all you need is a smartphone. As an early present, UniCredit Bank introduces a possibility of making payments in a quick, convenient, and secure manner in the Smart Banking mobile application using only your fingerprint.

 

Already in May of last year, UniCredit Bank was the first bank in the Czech market to introduce the fingerprint technology in smartphones in its mobile banking. Owing to their fingerprint, clients can log into Smart Banking as well as the Online Banking key.. Now, clients may use it even more effectively – for faster and safer signing of payments.

 

The most important thing in every relationship is to truly listen. Here, at UniCredit Bank, we have made the wishes of our clients come true. The outcome is a unique innovation allowing them to confirm payments up to CZK 5,000 in the mobile Smart Banking by using only a fingerprint,says Carmelo Minardi, Director of Multi-Channel Banking at UniCredit Bank. Transactions over CZK 5,000 will be signed by PIN, as at present.

 

UniCredit Bank’s Smart Banking makes full use of the state-of-the-art technology of smartphones. Besides simplifying the activation of the application via SMS, the feature of account detail sharing or automatic setting of the payment date, we have made the last update of the mobile Smart Banking more comfortable and safer. 

 

Fingerprint payments bring clients extra comfort and speed when making their transactions from a mobile phone. To send money using a fingerprint is just as convenient and fast as to pay for your shopping with a contactless card at the cash-desk with a beep,” adds Radek Jirka, Manager of Direct Banking at UniCredit Bank.

 

In order to secure personal data protection, Smart Banking uses the fingerprint technology in the user’s smartphone. Fingerprints are neither saved nor sent to the bank’s server. Following the next update of the application, UniCredit Bank’s Smart Banking users with smartphones where the fingerprint feature is enabled may use it.

Fingerprint 1Fingerprint 2

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Enquiries:              Petr Plocek, Press Spokesman of UniCredit Bank Czech Republic and Slovakia

                               E-mail: petr.plocek@unicreditgroup.cz

                               Phone: 606 694 156                     

15.12.2016 - Get ready for EET. Clients of UniCredit Bank can cut their cost on acquiring cash register system

Prague, 15 December – UniCredit Bank will allow entrepreneurs and traders to considerably cut their costs on implementing electronic records of sales (EET). To those interested, the Bank will offer a cash register system from the company Dotykačka for the lowest price. The cash register system also enables interconnection with payment terminals. Thanks to a discount, clients of UniCredit can get the basic package containing a tablet with the cash register system and a printer for as little as CZK 4,242.

 

“We want to make the work of entrepreneurs and traders as easy as possible, save their time and money. We have carried out for them an in-depth analysis of the market offering solutions for EET and we have chosen the most favourable solution from the company Dotykačka. Thanks to our discount, they can acquire the best value-for-money cash register system from as little as CZK 4,242. Clients do not need to acquire payment terminals, but if needed, they can easily interconnect payment terminals with the acquired solution,” says Jiří Daneš, Head of Small Business Segment in UniCredit Bank.

 

UniCredit Bank, in cooperation with the company Dotykačka, will allow small entrepreneurs and traders to acquire all their solutions related to the implementation of electronic records of sales for the most favourable prices. The cash registered system from Dotykačka can, in full operation, record sales and print fiscal identification codes and security codes of the payer on receipts. Thanks to the possibility of interconnection with certified payment terminals of UniCredit Bank, entrepreneurs will get a reliable solution of cash register system for recording sales with many other functionalities and 24/7 support.

 

UniCredit Bank has also prepared a simple solution for those entrepreneurs and traders who are obliged to record sales and who already own a cash register system. UniCredit Bank will interconnect their existing or newly acquired payment terminal with EET software from the company Sonet. That will allow them to comply with their statutory recording obligation simply and without the need to change their existing cash registers. “Our terminals are able to process e-sales not only from payment terminals, but also in the case of cash payment or payment by electronic meal voucher,” adds Jiří Daneš.

 

Entrepreneurs in the area of accommodation and boarding services have the obligation of electronic recording of sales since 1 December of this year. The obligation will gradually, until the year 2018, apply to all entrepreneurs and companies who receive money for goods or services (cash or payments by card, meal vouchers, etc.), from wholesale to retail, through freelancers, as well as farmers and selected craftsmen.

 

Enquiries:              Petr Plocek, Press Spokesman of UniCredit Bank Czech Republic and Slovakia

                               E-mail: petr.plocek@unicreditgroup.cz

                               Phone: 606 694 156                     

1.12.2016 - Information on the regime of processing payment orders, administering mutual funds and the operation of the bank´s branches at the end of the year 2016

More information find here.

25.11.2016 - UniCredit Bank launches new Online Banking with financial planning

Prague, November 25th UniCredit Bank has launched a brand new Online Banking version with a modern design and an entire range of new functions. In the last two years, the number of users of UniCredit Bank online banking has increased by more than 40 percent, exceeding 400 thousand.

 

Modern internet banking by UniCredit Bank meets clients’ needs at a time when 9 out of 10 Czechs active on the internet manage their finance primarily online. We are checking our account balance most frequently on Mondays, logging in the online banking on the first day of the week almost 40% more often than on other days. We are sending payments primarily in the morning between 9 a.m. and noon, as shown by the UniCredit Bank data.

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„Today, internet banking is no longer about payments alone. It has become the centre of financial planning so as to keep all our expenses under control. We are introducing an innovation of our Online Banking, reflecting these trends. It enables clients to easily send payments, plan their budget for future expenses and see the past ones at any time. Moreover, clients save money easier with the smart automatic saving in order to fulfil all of their dreams,“ says Carmelo Minardi, Head of Multi-Channel Banking, UniCredit Bank.

 

Easy payments

Tens of thousands of standard transactions made by clients on a daily basis will be easier owing to the PAY function. “With the new function of Online Banking, you no longer have to deal with what type of payment you want to make. You just enter the account number or telephone number and the system will recognise whether you are sending a domestic or foreign payment, or whether you want to top up your mobile phone,” explains Radek Jirka, Manager of Direct Banking.

 

Subsequently, you just fill in optional information, such as a variable symbol, and send the payment. Everything is intuitive, prompt, and easy.  Online Banking also remembers the account numbers and all the required data, summarising it in a directory. For their most frequent payments, clients may easily create a template for further use.

 

Fulfil your wishes and watch your expenses

With Online Banking by UniCredit Bank, clients can also keep a more detailed track of their finance. It automatically includes all client's expenses in one of the nine main categories (Cash, Household, Transport, Leisure & Shopping, Health & Beauty, Education, Business, Repayment and Fees, and Other). If the system cannot categorise an expense, the user himself/herself can add it in the appropriate "box".

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You can also determine a monthly budget for every category, and monitor the interactive charts to see how it is being implemented. The home page also shows balances of all products, including cards, savings accounts, loans and investments. Clients have their funds easily under control right at the first look in the Online Banking.

 

“The "My Goals" feature is another innovation. Would you like to have a quality bag or summer holiday? You just have to choose the price and deadline by which you want to fulfil your wish and the Online Banking itself calculates the amount you need to save on a monthly basis. So that you really don't forget, with one click you can make a standing order, automatically sending the amount required to be saved. You will have the whole amount saved by the set deadline and you can go shopping," states Radek Jirka.

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We are sending payments primarily before noon

The Czechs login in their internet banking most often early in the week, the most frequent Mondays being followed by other working days. “On the contrary, most clients are leaving their finance aside on weekends, with the number of logins increasing during Sunday afternoons, just before the ultimate end of the week,” explains Carmelo Minardi.

 

We are sending money from our accounts mainly in the morning, with the highest peak after 10 o'clock. An increasing volume of money is flowing through internet banking. At present, an average transaction of UniCredit Bank clients exceeds CZK 6,270, i.e. 7 percent more than last year. The strongest day is again Monday, with a considerable increase in payments starting on Sunday evenings.

 

Online Banking 1

 

Online Banking 2

 

Online Banking 3

 

Online Banking 4

 

 

Enquiries:              Petr Plocek, Press Spokesperson of UniCredit Bank Czech Republic and Slovakia

                               E-mail: petr.plocek@unicreditgroup.cz

                               Tel. No.: 606 694 156                              

24.11.2016 - UniCredit Bank obtains the Account of the Year 2016 award

Prague, 24th NovemberU Konto by UniCredit Bank is the best current account in the Czech Republic. In a prestigious competition of banking products entitled Fincentrum Bank of the Year 2016, UniCredit Bank ranked first in the Account of the Year category. Experts have awarded its unique current account, which offers a whole range of services and withdrawals from all ATMs worldwide free of charge. Moreover, the bank offers a ten-year guarantee of the account conditions. Since its creation in 2014, the U Konto by UniCredit Bank has been opened by more than 315 thousand clients of the bank.


"We have been the first bank in the Czech and Slovak market to introduce the fee-free account in April 2014. We aimed to meet not only the clients’ requirements and expectations as regards modern, innovative and user-friendly current accounts, we also wanted to positively surprise our clients. That is why the U Konto provides not only a whole range of services free of charge, including online transactions and mobile banking, but also withdrawals from ATMs worldwide. Moreover, clients are able to conveniently use all these benefits in the long term, owing to the ten-year guarantee of conditions," says Giovanni Guidi, Head of Retail and Private Banking at UniCredit Bank.

 

Clients can open the fee-free account at branches at UniCredit Bank or UniCredit Bank Expres, partners´ corners or fully online. Subject to an active use of the U Konto, clients can use the account completely free of charge. All you need to do is send, let’s say, your pay to this account and generate a monthly credit turnover of CZK 12,000. For young people up to 26 years of age, the U Konto is free of charge without any conditions. Within the U Konto, clients obtain a free-of-charge account keeping, debit payment card, electronic transactions, and access to Online and Smart Banking. Moreover, with the U Konto, clients do not have to waste their time by looking for an ATM and they can withdraw cash free of charge at any ATM at home or worldwide with no limitations. In the U Konto TANDEM option, clients can meet the condition of active account use in pairs, getting two mutually independent accounts.

 

Both existing and new clients who currently open the favourable free-of-charge U Konto in the bank get the opportunity to buy a powerful and elegant Huawei P9 lite Dual SIM smartphone under favourable conditions. Owing to the pre-approved credit card, they can get the smartphone for only CZK 499 a month for 12 months.

 

 

Enquiries:              Petr Plocek, Press Spokesperson of UniCredit Bank Czech Republic and Slovakia

                               E-mail: petr.plocek@unicreditgroup.cz

                               Tel. No.: 606 694 156                              

Consolidated Interim Report as at September 30, 2016 – Press release

Consolidated Interim Report download here.

11.11.2016 - Lower instalments and a smartphone free of charge? Transfer your loans to UniCredit Bank and extend their maturity up to 8 years

Prague, 11 November – Pay less on a monthly instalment and even get a smartphone free of charge? Owing to the favourable PRESTO Loan by UniCredit Bank, your wish will come true. You can save a considerable amount of money by transferring one or consolidating several existing consumer loans, bank overdrafts, or used credit cards to UniCredit Bank. Now, you can extend your repayment period up to 96 months, making your monthly instalments lower. Moreover, you will get a favourable interest rate from 4.9% p.a. and a powerful Huawei smartphone completely free of charge.

“When transferring or consolidating consumer loans, the possibility of saving money is important for clients. With our PRESTO Loan, they will not only save money owing to the favourable interest rate but they will also be able to considerably reduce the total amount of their monthly instalment as required owing to the new possibility of extending the repayment period to eight years. In this way, they will have more money in their family budget every month,” says Dalibor Mička, Household Financing Director at UniCredit Bank.

 

Clients who transfer their consumer loans, bank overdrafts, or credit cards to UniCredit during the autumn will get an extra bonus - a powerful and elegant Huawei P9 lite Dual SIM smartphone free of charge. All you have to do is take out a PRESTO Loan* of at least CZK 200,000 and arrange the repayment period from 72 up to 96 months.

 

* The offer applies to all PRESTO Loan types with the insurance of the ability to pay and with an actively used account in UniCredit Bank. The minimum amount of the loan (including the insurance) must be at least CZK 200,000 for a minimum duration of 72 months.

 

 

Enquiries:          Petr Plocek, Press Spokesperson of UniCredit Bank Czech Republic and Slovakia

                           E-mail: petr.plocek@unicreditgroup.cz

                           Tel. No.: 606 694 156

 

3.10.2016 - UniCredit to Introduce Export Financing and Leasing News at the International Engineering Fair

Brno, 3 OctoberThe leaders of the SME and Corporate financing in the Czech market, UniCredit Bank, UniCredit Leasing and UniCredit Factoring, plan to present their services at the International Engineering Fair. The visitors will learn about the news and trends in corporate banking, export financing, leasing and factoring services. The visitors may find the companies in booth 076 in the pavilion Z.

The economic success of the Czech Republic is greatly due to mechanical engineering, production of motor vehicles and transportation machines, and the technological sector in general. The economic boom and the positive economic growth are also perceptible in the Czech export. The rapidly changing geopolitical situation keeps pushing Czech companies to go for a more substantial diversification. However, exporters also discover new opportunities in unusual regions.

 

“Besides recovery of the Russian demand and the already traditional standing of Azerbaijan, the country featuring one of the greatest exposures when it comes to export financing, we face the growing demand from the South-East Asia, and particularly from Indonesia, Laos and Vietnam. Czech export could find greater space in the African continent in future, but now it continues to lag behind its potential despite gradual growth,” explained Jiří Flégl, Manager of UniCredit Bank’s Structured Export Financing. The improvement of business conditions in Central America is worth mentioning as well. The developing regional integration, strategic location close to sea routes, and particularly the emerging customs union attracts investors from all over the world.

 

The Bank's presentation at the fair will be accompanied by UniCredit Leasing, one of the leaders in the non-bank financing market and the member of the UniCredit Bank financial group. The company which celebrated the 250th anniversary in the Czech market this year will present the visitors with the offer of products and services in machinery and agricultural technology financing. UniCredit Leasing finances plenty of Czech exporters and offers a whole range of re-financing solutions for investment designs of each and every client. The demand of clients for intermediation of leasing products securing the necessary investments with minimum, or even zero, initial costs has been growing on a long-term basis.

 

“Machinery and machine technology financing constitutes an important segment and we are successful in making use of all three business channels. We are successful in the direct sale, in synergies with the Bank and, last but not least, in the cooperation with the manufacturers and suppliers of the technology itself. The trend in the machinery sector definitely heads for the financial leasing. It reaches as much as two thirds of all sales in this segment. Thanks to financial leasing, the companies acquire equipment as a certain form of investment with a much longer use value compared to the repayment period of this equipment,” said Jiří Matula, CEO and Chairman of the Board of UniCredit Leasing.

 

Besides the still more popular financial and operating leasing, UniCredit Leasing will also introduce other products at the fair. From CreditMachinery, a standard purposeful loan to buy machinery, up to the pre-financing of machinery, irregular and deferred instalments, beneficial insurance and the combination with all kinds of subsidy titles.

 

UniCredit Bank has vast experience in export financing. The quality of its services was recognized by the well-known Euromoney magazine last year again when it won the Best Trade Finance Bank award. Furthermore, UniCredit Bank is also the general partner of the DHL Export Award, a prestigious prize for small and medium enterprises which made it to foreign markets.

 

 

Questions:            Petr Plocek, Press Agent of UniCredit Bank Czech Republic and Slovakia

                                e-mail: petr.plocek@unicreditgroup.cz

                                phone: 606 694 156

21.9.2016 - Want more from your bank. Get a Huawei smartphone at an advantageous price with the U Konto account or PRESTO Loan from UniCredit Bank

 

Prague, 21 September – Do you want to get a powerful and elegant smartphone for free or with a considerable discount right from your bank? It's no problem with UniCredit Bank. Owing to the favourable PRESTO Loan, you can now get a Huawei smartphone entirely free of charge. At the same time, we are also extending the already long list of benefits of the free-of-charge U Konto account, with which you can get the mentioned smartphone with a significant discount. The UniCredit Bank autumn campaign focused on the benefits of both products has kicked off.

 

In the autumn, all clients who take out a consumer PRESTO Loan receive a powerful and elegant Huawei P9 lite Dual SIM smartphone from UniCredit Bank as a gift*. The only condition is a minimum amount of loan of CZK 200 thousand and duration of the repayment period of at least 72 months. The loan may be used for anything, or merge or transfer your existing loans to UniCredit Bank and save, let’s say, on a monthly instalment. You can also save money by taking out the insurance of the ability to repay and by actively using your account in UniCredit Bank.

 

Moreover, existing or new clients who open the advantageous free-of-charge U Konto account in the bank have the opportunity to buy the mentioned smartphone at favourable CZK 5,990, saving around one-fifth of the current market price. Owing to a pre-approved credit card which they easily get within a U Konto account, clients can buy the smartphone at only CZK 499 a month for a 12-month period. Almost 300 thousand clients have already been using the benefits of the popular U Konto account, such as account keeping, online transactions or withdrawals from any ATM all over the world entirely free of charge, subject to an active use of the account. All you need to have, let’s say, your pay sent to this account and generate a monthly credit turnover of CZK 12,000.

 

Within the campaign, there have been TV spots on TV Nova and TV Prima and their related channels in CZ from 19 September. In Slovakia, TV spots will be primarily broadcast on TV Markíza. In the online environment, the focus will be mainly on display banner ads on the most popular servers - iDnes.cz, Seznam.cz, Blesk.cz and Denik.cz in the Czech Republic and on Sme.sk, Atlas.sk, Aktuality.sk or Centrum.sk in Slovakia. A part of the campaign will also be on social networks.

 

 

* The offer applies to PRESTO Loans with the insurance of the ability to pay and with an actively used account in UniCredit Bank. The minimum amount of the loan (including the insurance) must be at least CZK 200,000 and duration of at least 72 months.

 

 

Enquiries:       Petr Plocek, Press Spokesperson of UniCredit Bank Czech Republic and Slovakia

                        E-mail: petr.plocek@unicreditgroup.cz

                        Tel. No.: 606 694 156

2.9.2016 - UniCredit Bank introduces a historically lowest interest rate, starting from 1.29%, for multi-annual fixations to the mortgage market

 

Prague, 2 September – The period of reductions in mortgage loan rates continues. A historically lowest interest rate, starting from 1.29%, for seven- and ten-year fixation periods has been introduced to the Czech market. UniCredit Bank thus continues in its “all at the price of one” mortgage concept, introducing a single interest rate starting from 1.29% p.a. for 3-, 5-, 7-, and 10-year fixations. The bank’s historical reduction in interest rates is valid from 1 September 2016.

 

The new “all at the price of one” mortgage concept has been favoured by UniCredit Bank clients for three years already and has been awarded by the professional jury in Zlatá koruna 2016. During this autumn, the bank decided to extend its concept to longer fixations, which are increasingly popular. In the first six-month period of 2016, for instance, ten-year fixations were taken out in the bank by 60% more clients yoy and their involvement in the popular concept soon followed.

 

“Today, an interest rate guaranteed for several years is one of the most frequent requirements by mortgage loan applicants. We, at UniCredit Bank, meet their requirements and introduce the historically lowest interest rates - attractive as to both their amount and length - to the Czech mortgage market,” says Giovanni Guidi, Director of Retail and Private Banking Division.

 

In the UniCredit Bank offer, the new interest rates of mortgage loans are available from 1 September 2016. The offer of 3-, 5-, 7-, and even 10-year fixations applies both to purchases of new housing and refinancing of existing mortgage loans.

 

UniCredit Bank is currently the fourth largest bank in the country, providing a wide range of mortgage loans via its experts in the entire branch network of UniCredit Bank and UniCredit Bank Express, including the distribution network of its partners. Clients may secure refinancing of mortgage also through the modern banking e-shop from the comfort of their home.

 

 

Enquiries:          Petr Plocek, Press Spokesperson of UniCredit Bank Czech Republic and Slovakia

                        E-mail: petr.plocek@unicreditgroup.cz

UniCredit Bank Czech Republic and Slovakia achieved excellent business results in the first half of 2016. Consolidated net profit grew by 11.9% yoy to CZK 3.5 billion

  • Consolidated net profit went up by 11.9% yoy to CZK 3.5 billion compared to half-year results of the financial group UniCredit Bank Czech Republic and Slovakia reported in the last year.
  • Operating income increased by 6.9% yoy.
  • Loans to clients rose by 4.9% compared to 30 June 2015.
  • Deposits from clients increased by 11.8% yoy.
  • Total assets grew by 12.6% yoy.
  • Mortgage loan and consumer loan from UniCredit Bank succeeded in the Zlatá koruna (Golden Crown) competition; mobile Smart Banking won second place in the Novelty of the Year category.
  • Both UniCredit Leasing and UniCredit Factoring celebrated 25 years on the Czech market.

The after-tax consolidated profit of UniCredit Bank Czech Republic and Slovakia increased from CZK 3,095 million (as of 30 June 2015) to CZK 3,463 million (as of 30 June 2016).

Comments of Jiří Kunert, CEO and Chairman of the Board of Directors of UniCredit Bank Czech Republic and Slovakia:
"Despite the increased costs to the Resolution Fund and the Deposit Insurance Fund, we have achieved a twelve percent growth in consolidated net profit. This major increase in net profit was due to both the steadily increasing volumes of retail and corporate loans as well as the return on the international transaction – acquisition of Visa Europe, where our bank had a shareholding. We manage to successfully implement the set strategy across all segments and we are creating a strong position for further growth on both markets. UniCredit Bank enjoys high levels of trust among its clients, in the times when banks all around Europe are under pressure from increasing regulation, maintaining profitability or events such as Brexit."

FINANCIAL INDICATORS OF UniCredit Bank Czech Republic and Slovakia – 1ST HALF-YEAR 2016

 Consolidated Data

1H 2016

1H 2015

Change

Profit and Loss Statement (CZK million)

 

 

 

Net interest and similar income

5,078

5,200

-2.3 %

Net fee and commission income

1,919

1,956

-1.9 %

Administrative expenses

4,151

3,646

+13.9 %

Credit risk cost

542

762

-28.9 %

Profit before income tax

4,360

3,884

+12.3 %

Net profit after tax

3,463

3,095

+11.9 %

Balance Sheet (CZK million)

 

 

 

Total assets

632,779

561,766

+12.6 %

Receivables from clients

373,221

355,880

+4.9 %

Deposits from clients

372,156

333,008

+11.8 %

Payables from debt securities

63,299

67,811

-6.7 %

Shareholder's issued capital

64,849

57,777

+12.2 %


COMMENTS TO THE ATTAINED RESULTS

Items of Profit and Loss Statement
“Low interest rates and growing competition on the banking market result in a slight decrease of net interest income and net income from fees and commissions. Growing regulatory requirements have further impact on the growth of administrative expenses of banks, including our Bank. However, it is thanks to our prudent strategy and positive macro environment that we manage to continually reduce credit risk cost which fell by 28.9% yoy,” said Mr. Gregor Hofstaetter-Pobst, CFO of UniCredit Bank.

Balance Sheet

  • In the retail banking, the lending segment grew considerably by 13.6% thanks to a high growth of mortgage loans (14.3%), as well as of consumer loans (11%). Bank deposits of retail clients are also growing (9.1%), supported by the success of the no-fee account U konto (U Account) which is gaining growing popularity, especially among young clients.
  • In the corporate segment, deposits from clients significantly increased by 18.1% yoy. Stable growth of granted loans (4.8%) was visible in the segment of small and medium enterprises which reported a two-digit growth by 10.1%.
  • As for leasing companies, financed value of vehicles grew by 26% in the first half of 2016 compared to the same period of 2015. The most significant year-on-year growth expressed in percent was reached by vehicles up to 3.5 tonnes (31%) and vehicles over 3.5 tonnes (7%).

Novelties and awards

  • At the beginning of this year, both UniCredit Leasing and UniCredit Factoring celebrated 25 years on the Czech market.
  • In the first half of 2016, UniCredit Bank also introduced several important product novelties. Customers can now open U konto TANDEM (U Account Tandem) which enables them to fulfil the condition of minimum turnover for no-fee current account in tandem. The introduction of PRESTO Půjčka (PRESTO Loan) with a bonus of CZK 3,000 (in the case of loan over CZK 100 thousand) was also promoted by a marketing campaign of the Bank. The Bank already launched the second round of the successful programme “Doporuč a získej” (Recommend and Be Awarded) in which the Bank rewards its customers for recommending services to friends and acquaintances.
  • In the Zlatá koruna (Golden Crown) competition, UniCredit Bank had the best mortgage and consumer loan. Also mobile Smart Banking was successful, winning the second place in the Novelty of the Year category. The professional jury also awarded the stock dividend fund of Pioneer Investments, which is a member of UniCredit Group.

2.8.2016 - All you need to have in Rio is a payment card and petty cash; watch out for frequent thefts or ten financial tips for enjoying a nice holiday in Brazil full of sporting experiences

Prague, 2 August - This years No. 1 sporting event is fast approaching and not even the thousands of kilometres between the Czech Republic and Brazil will dissuade convinced sports fans from visiting Rio de Janeiro. They will enjoy sunny beaches, samba rhythms, several monuments, and powerful sporting experiences. But even a holiday comes at a price. Where to pay with your card, where to pay with cash, how to withdraw money from ATMs and, first of all, how to not get robbed in Rio? You will get all the information in our summary ten tips for your finance during the sporting adventure in Brazil.

1) Prices are somewhat higher than in CZ, the currency is Brazilian Real
Brazilian currency is Brazilian Real (R$), with one Real divided into 100 centavos. It corresponds to around CZK 7. Prices are a bit higher than in the Czech Republic here, in particular in tourist destinations. For transport and entry to the famous gigantic statue of Christ the Redeemer you will pay from CZK 160 to 480, depending on the ticket type.

2) Take US dollars with you, you can exchange them at the best exchange rate in exchange offices
Reals are hard to exchange in CZ. US dollars are a safe bet, with a recently increasing possibility of exchanging Euros, too. Take only cash for the first few days. But watch out, for example, a taxi drive from airport can cost you around USD 60, even USD 100 to some districts. A small amount of cash can be exchanged in the Rio airport exchange office (câmbio). The best exchange rates are offered by exchange offices in the city. Please note that they are often open only until 4 PM. On the contrary, exchange rates in hotels tend to be undervalued. 

3) Do not take an unreasonably large amount of cash with you, you can pay by card almost everywhere in Rio
Recently, payment terminals have spread massively across the country, allowing you to pay by card practically everywhere. You can use it in shops, hotels, and restaurants. When making payments with a merchant, say you are paying “credito” [pronounce kre:dʒitu]. You will be able to use the standard debit and credit card. The only place where you will not do without cash is public transport, most taxis and some beach sellers, although even they have a terminal already.

4) When travelling, having two cards is better
Ideally, a credit and a debit card. You will at least be all right when one of them is lost or stolen. Sometimes it is convenient to use a credit card instead of the debit card, say, when booking hotels or paying online. Listen to your banker’s advice as to when it is adequate to use the relevant card.

5) Try a cashless holiday, ATMs are not functioning very well in Brazil
Do not rely much on ATMs in Brazil. Although there is quite a lot of them in busy streets, supermarkets and sometimes even in pharmacies, they are often not functioning. They can also request extra charges or fail to supply the entire amount available on your card. When you are already out of cash, due to frequent thefts and frauds, look for ATMs of Brazilian renowned major banks, marked with the logo of your card, which are located in the main streets, ideally inside their branches. Use ATMs for withdrawals (saques). ATMs not designated as ATMs for withdrawals do not supply cash. Make no withdrawals alone, in back alleys, and from ATMs of unknown banks. And remember, there are accounts thanks to which you can make withdrawals free of charge anywhere in the world.

6) Watch out for frauds, mainly skimming
Skimming or installation of a reader in an ATM, which copies card data and PIN, is rather common here. Once again, make withdrawals only from ATMs of major banks directly at their branches, avoid back alleys, unknown companies or devices suspicious in any way. When suspicious, rather go somewhere else.

7) Thefts taking place every day. How to avoid them?
Petty thieves move around the entire city and local authorities expect a significant increase in their activities during the sporting event. If you abide by these simple rules, you do not have to be afraid of being robbed. It is not advisable to go to the beach or park after dark. Do not rely on the busy public premises. Always have two wallets with you. In the well-hidden wallet, keep your cards and documents. Keep ten or fifteen dollars in the other one. If someone would want to rob you, keep calm. Do not resist, do not talk back, do not try to negotiate. Calmly hand over your wallet with the petty cash. They will be satisfied and let you go. And you will not lose your valuables or documents.

8) Insure yourself and your money
Before the travel, do not forget to take out travel insurance; you can often get better conditions for your payment card. Take out insurance for your cards, too. It covers the misuse of a stolen or lost payment card. It also applies to online transactions and PIN payments. It also covers repeated acquisition of stolen documents, keys, or mobile phone. In the event of a loss or theft, protection of the card owner may apply up to 120 hours retroactively from the blockage.

9) Hire-purchase system everywhere
Brazilian people have a lose attitude towards money, preferring various hire-purchase systems. Today, you can even buy a bottle of lemonade right in the corner shop using a hire-purchase system. However, this method of payment is not advisable :-) If you pay by credit card and you are asked about the number of instalments, say only one. Foreign credit cards allow no hire-purchase.

10) It is not easy to get a local SIM card
If you have thought that you would buy a local SIM card to save money on high roaming expenses, you will be disappointed. Although you can buy a cards for your mobile phone, it can be only activated for a Brazilian birth certificate number (CPF - Cadastro de Pessoas Físicas). You will also need a CPF to buy flight tickets, car or, say, air-conditioner at favourable prices. You can also get one as tourists using your passports. However, the procedure can also last an entire day, which you would definitely rather spend watching Barbora Spotakova throwing the javelin.

13.6.2016 - Giovanni Guidi appointed as a new Board member of UniCredit Bank

Prague, 13 JuneGiovanni Guidi (62) became a new Board member of UniCredit Bank Czech Republic and Slovakia in June. Within UniCredit Bank, he will continue in his position as Head of Retail and Private Banking Division.

Giovanni Guidi has more than 40 years of experience in the banking sector. He started his career in UniCredit Group in 1975 as an employee in retail network of Credito Italiano. He gradually made his way up to top management. He was in charge of the development of Retail and SME segment as well as of Credit and Market Risk Processes.

Giovanni Guidi started his international career in 2002 in UniCredit Group’s New Europe Division, where he was responsible for the development of Retail and SME segment. From 2005, he participated in the reorganisation of UniCredit Group and worked as a regional manager in several Central and Eastern Europe countries, from Poland and Croatia to Turkey.

In 2008, Mr. Guidi held the office of Head of Retail Risk in Ukrosotsbank, a former Ukrainian branch of UniCredit Group. In 2010, he joined UniCredit Bank Czech Republic as Head of Consumer Finance. In 2012, he was appointed Head of Retail Banking Division and shortly after also Executive Committee member. Mr. Guidi participated, for instance, in strategies for acquisition and retention of affluent clients and in development of retail banking.

8.6.2016 - Two is better than one. Enjoy the benefits of a free-of-charge account in tandem with the new U Konto Tandem account by UniCredit Bank

Prague, 8 June You are always two in a tandem to share the everything. Even a bank account. In a tandem, you can easily meet the only condition of active account use with the new U Konto Tandem account by UniCredit Bank. If you have a total of CZK 12,000 sent to your two linked accounts every month, you both will get a free-of-charge keeping of accounts that are independent of each other and many other services for free.

 

Two is always better than one. Link two current accounts in UniCredit Bank into the new U Konto Tandem account and you can help each other meet all the preconditions for a free-of-charge keeping of these accounts. In addition, the proportion in which you credit these accounts with CZK 12,000 does not matter.  Even an unexpected reduction in your income will not catch you unprepared. In tandem, you will overcome it with no useless extra expenses with the U Konto Tandem account.

 

Both clients with a U Konto Tandem account will enjoy the same benefits as with the popular U Konto account: account keeping or withdrawals from all ATMs worldwide for free, free-of-charge domestic online payments and many other services. Each of the two linked accounts is completely independent with its own payment cards and Online as well as Smart Banking. Moreover, UniCredit Bank guarantees the account conditions for the next ten years.

 

UniCredit Bank introduced the unique free-of-charge U Konto account to the Czech and Slovak market in April 2014. In more than two years of its existence, it has been opened by over 260 thousand clients of the bank and their number has been steadily increasing.

 

 

 

Enquiries:           Petr Plocek, Press Spokesperson of UniCredit Bank Czech Republic and Slovakia

                            E-mail: petr.plocek@unicreditgroup.cz

                            Tel. No.: 606 694 156

1.6.2016 - UniCredit Bank has the best mortgage and consumer loan in the Zlatá Koruna contest. UniCredit’s Smart Banking is successful, too

Prague, 1 June UniCredit Bank receives three awards in this years Zlatá Koruna contest, ranking top in two categories. According to the professional jury, UniCredits mortgage loan and purpose-specific PRESTO Loan for housing are the top products in the Czech market. Moreover, the unique Smart Banking with fingerprint logon was selected as a runner-up in the Novelty of the Year category. The professional jury also awarded the stock dividend fund of Pioneer Investments, which is a member of UniCredit Group.

 

We are very keen to provide clients with simple, innovative, and understandable products. Our offer of mortgages, consumer loans, or the innovative Smart Banking, which have been rewarded this year in the Zlatá koruna contest, confirms, that our intention and efforts are matching clients satisfaction and recognition. This is the most important to us,” says Paolo Iannone, Vice-Chairman of the Board and Deputy CEO at UniCredit Bank.

 

Since 2010, it has been three times we have stood on the winning end in the Zlatá Koruna contest thanks to our consumer loans or mortgages, and I am pleased that this year we have received two golden awards and our Smart Banking with a fingerprint logon scored in the Novelty of the Year category,adds Giovanni Guidi, Board Member and Director of Retail and Private Banking at UniCredit Bank.

 

The first place in the Mortgages category was awarded to UniCredit Bank owing to its mortgage loans, offered by the bank with a uniform interest rate starting from 1.49% p.a. for three-year and five-year fixation period as well as the variable interest rate. Moreover, clients can repay up to 20% of the loan’s principal a year free of charge.

 

The first place in the Loans category goes to the new PRESTO Loan for housing. Owing to this product, UniCredit Bank offers as much as CZK 1 million with no need to secure your mortgage with real estate for any housing-related purpose. Interest rates start from 4.9% p.a.; clients only have to prove the purpose of the loan within six months from drawdown. The documents can be dated within one year before the provision, so the PRESTO Loan is also suitable for financing of ongoing projects, purchase of a cooperative or municipal flat or housing reconstruction.

 

The second place in the Novelty of the Year category goes to the new SMART Banking with a simple fingerprint logon. The bank has introduced it as the first one in the Czech Republic in the spring of 2015. The success in the survey is a proof of UniCredit Bank’s unique position among banking innovators in the Czech market.

 

At the same time, the professional jury awarded a third place to the stock dividend fund of the leading investment company Pioneer Investments. This company is a member of UniCredit Group and it is one of the best fund managers in the world in the long run.

 

 

Enquiries:              Petr Plocek, Press Spokesperson of UniCredit Bank Czech Republic and Slovakia

                                E-mail: petr.plocek@unicreditgroup.cz

                                Tel. No.: 606 694 156

11.5.2016 - UniCredit Bank Czech Republic and Slovakia achieved consolidated net profit of CZK 1.3 billion for the first three months of 2016

UniCredit Bank Czech Republic and Slovakia achieved consolidated net profit of CZK 1.3 billion for the first three months of 2016

Stable growth in lending, deposits and an increase in the number of clients with unbeatable U konto

  • Consolidated net profit went down slightly by 4.2% yoy adjusted for the effect of the contribution to the Resolution Fund and the Deposit Insurance Fund, which was posted in 1Q2016. Having accounted for the mandatory contribution, it went down by 20.3% yoy to CZK 1.3 billion.
  • Operating income was down 8% yoy.
  • Compared to 31 March 2015, loans to clients rose by 5.5%.
  • Customer deposits increased by 14.2% yoy.
  • Total assets went up by 16.5% yoy.
  • Consolidated capital adequacy is 15.62% (non-audited data).
  • In its Private Banking Survey 2016, the renowned Euromoney Magazine awarded UniCredit Bank for its innovative private banking technology and its Art Banking service, oriented on investment in art. In the Mergermarket Agency’s M&A Awards, UniCredit was awarded Financial Adviser of the Year Central &Eastern Europe thanks to its advisory in the Czech Republic and Slovakia.

Prague, 11 May – The after-tax preliminary consolidated profit of UniCredit Bank Czech Republic and Slovakia decreased from CZK 1,677 million (as of 31 March 2015) to CZK 1,337 million (as of 31 March 2016). Mr Jiří Kunert, CEO and Chairman of the Board of Directors of UniCredit Bank Czech Republic and Slovakia, commented on the results:

“Our business results are in line with the development of the banking sector’s profitability in an environment of low interest rates and yet, despite this fact, it exceeds market expectations. The most significant decline in revenues was recorded in trading on financial markets, which last year quarter was compared to this year's very strong. In the retail segment, we are continuing the dynamic development of new products and digital innovations in consumer financing, and this has been translated into clients’ demand and double-digit growth in loans and mortgages. The same pace is also maintained in lending to small and medium-sized enterprises. This year’s good start has also been reflected in more than 20 per cent increase in the financed value of vehicles provided by our leasing companies.”

Items of Profit and Loss Statement

The net interest income of UniCredit Bank Czech Republic and Slovakia was down to CZK 2,511 million (as of 31 March 2015: CZK 2,565 million). The net income from fees and commissions declined to CZK 925 million yoy (as of 31 March 2015: CZK 941 million).

The level of general administrative expenses rose by 24.7% to CZK 2,240 million (as of 31 March 2015:
CZK 1,796 million). After adjustment of costs to the Resolution Fund and to the Deposit Insurance Fund, is the annual increase in general administrative expenses 6%. The credit risk cost dropped to CZK 172 million yoy (as of 31 March 2015: CZK 346 million).

“In line with IFRS we booked the estimated costs for our contribution to the Resolution Fund and the Deposit Insurance Fund in 1Q 2016, hence the net profit is down 20.3%, adjusted the consolidated net profit dropped slightly, by 4.2%. Despite the persistent environment of low interest rates, we have maintained a solid base of net interest income and have succeeded in increasing the volume of transactions across all segments. Our credit risk cost was down to CZK 172 million, reflecting the soundness of our portfolio as well as strong macroeconomic environment. We further continue to grow both in loans and deposits.” said Gregor Hofstaetter-Pobst, CFO of UniCredit Bank.

Balance Sheet

In retail banking, consumer financing reported further strengthening. Retail loans posted double-digit growth, with mortgage loans increasing by 14% yoy and consumer loans rising by 12% yoy. The number of clients who use the free-of-charge U konto account with a 10-year guarantee of conditions amounted to 263,000. Over the last quarter there was an increase of almost 10%.

In the corporate segment, there was a 7% yoy growth in lending to small and medium-sized enterprises. Corporate banking deposits also reported a strong increase, almost by 20% yoy.

In the leasing companies, the financed value of vehicles for 1Q2016 grew by 19% compared to the same period in 2015. The strongest yoy percentage growth was reported in commodities by vehicles up to 3.5 tonnes (35%) and vehicles over 3.5 tonnes (20%).

As of 31 March 2016, total assets of UniCredit Bank Czech Republic and Slovakia amounted to CZK 625,650 million, representing a 16.5% increase compared to the figures as of 31 March 2015 (CZK 536,988 million).

On the assets side of the Balance Sheet, receivables from clients increased by 5.5% to a total of CZK 368,051 million compared to 31 March 2015 (CZK 348,970 million).

On the liabilities side, liabilities towards clients grew by 14.2% to CZK 374,870 million (31 March 2015: CZK 328,120 million). Liabilities from debt securities rose by 26.1% to CZK 63,310 million (31 March 2015: CZK 50,198 million).

Compared to 1Q2015, the bank’s equity was up 4.3% to CZK 63,277 million (as of 31 March 2015: CZK 60,671 million).

31.3.2016 - UniCredit introduces preferential agricultural technology funding at the TechAgro Trade Fair

Prague, 31.3.2016

UniCredit introduces preferential agricultural technology funding at the TechAgro Trade Fair

Prague, 31 March – TechAgro, the largest agricultural fair in Central Europe will open its gates in Brno from 3 to 7 April and UniCredit Bank and UniCredit Leasing, the traditional partners of Czech agriculturists, must not miss it. At their stand in the A1 pavilion, they will introduce the visitors to a broad range of preferential financial products and services tailor made to the agricultural needs as well as counselling regarding the subsidy programs. UniCredit Leasing prepared a special funding offer for its clients, with 2.99% p.a. rate and first insurance free of charge. According to the UniCredit Bank estimates, Czech agriculturists usually buy technology up to the value of 7 billion Crowns per year, with most of it being financed through credit or leasing.  

"At the time, what the agricultural clients demand mostly are loans for purchasing agricultural land, the price of which is constantly growing. We also register great interest in investment loans aimed at reconstructing the agricultural objects, especially connected with subsidies from the Rural Development Program. With the support of European Investment Bank, agricultural clients are offered loans at preferential rates since we consider the modernization and increase of added value as the key condition for maintaining the sector's competitive strength. In case of crop failure or price decrease, we support our clients by simple short-term operating loans without establishing lien on the property. We are happy to introduce details tailor-made to the needs of individual clients at our stand," says Martin Potůček, Specialist for Agriculture, Renewable and Public financing of UniCredit Bank. In addition to favourable funding, UniCredit Bank also provides its clients with counselling regarding efficient utilisation of the subsidy programs.  

Thanks to cooperation with a majority of significant producers and importers, UniCredit Bank and UniCredit Leasing also enable favourable purchase of agricultural technology. They arrive at the TechAgro trade fair with an interesting funding offer with interest 2.99 % p.a. and down payment from 0 %. Moreover, they will help to process the request for subsidy from the Support and Guarantee Agricultural and Forestry Fund (PGRLF) and also add insurance for the first year free of charge. What is more, the loan may be repaid for as long as 84 months.  

However, UniCredit Bank together with UniCredit Leasing will help to finance any purchase, whether through loan, operative, or financial leasing. "Our most popular financial product in this segment is the flexible CreditAgro loan, the repayment of which can be adjusted to seasonal incomes, VAT deductions and drawdown of subsidies. This funding type is used by a majority of Czech agriculturists in all regions," explains Skalický, manager of non-automotive UniCredit Leasing. An interesting variant is also the Operative Agro leasing with increased residual cost, significantly growing last year.  

UniCredit Bank and UniCredit Leasing belong among the leaders on the agricultural funding market. UniCredit Bank provided loans worth of 3 billion Crowns to the agricultural sector in the Czech Republic, with additional 5 billion Crowns being granted in the related food-processing and agricultural technology sectors. Thus, according to the leasing companies association, UniCredit Leasing moved to number three in the field of agricultural technology funding in the Czech Republic. UniCredit has been also supporting Czech agriculture by its contacts and know-how. For example, last year the Company helped them to get to the largest European fair of fruit and vegetables, Macfrut, taking place in Italian Rimini, also being the partner of the Agrarian Chamber and Czech Potato Association.  

You can find UniCredit Bank and UniCredit Leasing at the TechAgro trade fair from 3 to 7 April, always from 9 AM to 6 PM, in the G2 pavilion, stand 009.

30.3.2016 - UniCredit Bank has newly become the partner of the RunCzech running series

Prague, 30.3.2016

UniCredit Bank has newly become the partner of the RunCzech running series
Runners have an opportunity to support the handicapped girl and their children may spend time in the play areas

UniCredit Bank has become this year’s official partner of the RunCzech running series. The Bank has always had a close relationship not only with a healthy approach to finances but also to life as a whole. Moreover, thanks to the special UniCredit Bank treadmill, the running enthusiasts may contribute to the purchase of wheelchair for a 12-year old handicapped girl. The Bank will also take care of the runners' kids and prepare a fun program for them in the Children's play area.

"Sport and Finance are disciplines similar to each other. In both of them, there are strong visions and plans in the beginning, however there is a long and challenging route leading to successful implementation, with reliable partners needed. UniCredit Bank would like to become such a partner also for the runners in the RunCzech series – the partner, they will always be able to rely upon in the world of finance," says Petr Plocek, spokesperson of UniCredit Bank. For the runners involved in this year’s RunCzech, UniCredit Bank prepared interesting opportunities how to take part and support a good cause.

Running for Elenka, or every meter counts
During the Prague Running Expo and at the May marathon, anyone running even a few meters will support the handicapped 12-year old girl, Elenka Pudíková. For every meter run by the participants on one of the two UniCredit Bank treadmills, the Bank will contribute one Crown for the purchase of new wheelchair. Afterwards, UniCredit Bank, together with Konto Bariéry foundation, will hand the whole sum to Elenka following the Prague Marathon weekend in May, which is a part of the RunCzech series. The participating treadmills will be located at the Running Expo at the Incheba Expo Prague fair from 31 March to 2 April as well as 7 - 8 May.

UniCredit Bank will take care of fun for the runners' kids
While the runners will be taking part in individual contests of the series, either for Elenka Pudíková or exploring the news regarding their favourite sport at the Prague Running Expo, UniCredit Bank will take care of their offspring. In the UniCredit Bank Children's play area, professional entertainers and nannies will ensure that the little ones will not get bored during the RunCzech series. Play areas will be available for children aged 2 to 12, first introduced by the Bank at the Prague fair grounds during Running Expo from 31 March to 1 April.

Special photo corner for the whole family
On the race day, runners may take pictures with their families in the UniCredit Bank tent. Each family member will obtain a badge with the picture, which may be pinned to the clothing, thanks to which they will have the support from their close ones with them at all times.

Summary of RunCzech races with participation of UniCredit Bank

  • Sportisimo 1/2Marathon Prague 2016 (2 April 2016) 
  • Volkswagen Marathon Weekend 2016 (7 - 8 May 2016) 
  • Mattoni 1/2Marathon Karlovy Vary 2016 (21 May 2016) 
  • Mattoni 1/2Marathon České Budějovice 2016 (4 June 2016) 
  • Mattoni 1/2Marathon Olomouc 2016 (25 June 2016) 
  • Birell Grand Prix Praha 2016 (10 September 2016) 
  • Mattoni 1/2Marathon Ústí nad Labem 2016 (17 September 2016)

29.3.2016 - PRESTO Loans for Anything, including housing – the stars of the new UniCredit Bank campaign

Prague, 29.3.2016

PRESTO Loans for Anything, including housing – the stars of the new UniCredit Bank campaign

Prague, 29 March – How about a hundred thousand for anything only for CZK 1,493 a month or a million crowns for housing at a great interest rate without the need to pledge the property as security? These are the stars of the new UniCredit Bank campaign focused on the PRESTO Loan launching on 29 March. The Bank is launching the new PRESTO Loan for Housing and the PRESTO Loan for Anything as a simple way to make your wishes and plans come true.  

Czech people will have the opportunity to hear of the UniCredit Bank campaign on the news servers iDNES.cz, iHNed.cz, Novinky.cz and Deník.cz, and by way of radio spots on the Impuls, Frekvence 1, Evropa 2, Kiss and the regional Hit radio stations. The consumer PRESTO Loan will also be promoted at the bank branches including the first banking kiosk which has been recently opened in the shopping centre Letňany in Prague.  

The PRESTO Loan for Anything will allow the clients to get funding for their wishes and dreams. They will be allowed to set the repayment period and the monthly instalment exactly to their needs. For example, they can get CZK 100,000 with the monthly instalment of CZK 1,493 and the repayment period of 84 months. Clients can look forward to free account management and, furthermore, they also will be allowed to take the opportunity to as many as five postponements of instalments. Clients may borrow as much as CZK 500,000 through the PRESTO Loan for Anything.  

One million crowns without pledging your housing which you can use for anything connected with housing is offered under the new PRESTO Loan for Housing. Better interest rates are awaiting the clients who are able to document the loan purpose. The funds can also be used for reconstruction or renovation of a property, including green projects and purchase of solar panels, or for the interest in a cooperative or a council flat. The only thing which needs to be done is to document the loan purpose, there’s no need to pledge the property.

In addition to the PRESTO Loan for Anything, the Bank also offers the opportunity to transfer one or more loans and save something in your monthly instalments. In such event, the Bank will take care of all paperwork including the communication with the original creditor. If you transfer one loan, you may draw as much as CZK 600,000 and if you merge multiple loans, you can draw a million!  

UniCredit will also focus on mortgages in Slovakia. The Bank wants to draw the attention of Slovaks to the exceptional conditions for mortgage refinancing: the lowest rates ever starting at 1.19% a year combined with reduced fees for mortgage prepayment to 1%. The Bank has triggered the campaign by way of TV spots on TV Markíza and TA3.

18.3.2016 - UniCredit Joins Earth Hour 2016 in 14 Countries

Milano, 18.3.2016

UniCredit Joins Earth Hour 2016 in 14 Countries

82 Group buildings in Europe will turn off lights 

 On March 19, UniCredit will turn off the lights in 82 of its buildings in 14 different European countries for Earth Hour, marking the Group's ninth consecutive year of participation in WWF's global initiative aimed at making people more aware of the climate change which poses as a serious threat to our planet.  

In the year following the seminal Climate Conference in Paris and the adoption of the new Sustainable Development Goals, UniCredit's support for the campaign emphasizes the Group's steady efforts over the years to address conservation of the environment and support sustainable development. As part of these efforts, the group is committed to reducing its operational emissions since 2009. Having already reached our 2020 target, we are now committed to achieve new ambitious ones: -60% by 2020 and -80% by 2030.  

This year, the lights in UniCredit's most prominent buildings will be turned off for one hour in 14 countries: Austria, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Bulgaria, Croatia, the Czech Republic, Hungary, Germany, Italy, Poland, Romania, Russia, Serbia, Slovakia and Ukraine

UniCredit Tower will also be taking part in this year's Earth Hour. The bank's headquarters in Milan has received a LEED Gold certification from the US Green Building Council for its scrupulous attention to energy savings in construction and design.    

The buildings participating this year are listed below:

16.3.2016 - Attractive Investment Opportunity with New UCB HEALTH CARE 102/2022 Structured Bond

Prague, 16.3.2016

Attractive Investment Opportunity with New UCB HEALTH CARE 102/2022 Structured Bond

Prague, 16 March 2016 UniCredit Bank follows the long tradition of issuing structured bonds which are very popular among clients in the long run. The new issue includes the issuer’s legal guarantee of return of the bond’s face value and it also offers an opportunity to participate in the development of the stock market in a viable health care sector.

Structured bond is an adequate addition to the next advantageous product in the UniCredit Bank’s offer – DUET PLUS 3-month term deposit with 3% p.a. interest rate.

Subscription of the structured bond will last until 28 April 2016, with the date of issue on 29 April 2016 and final due date on 29 April 2022. CZK 30,000 is the minimum investment.

The product may be acquired at any branch of UniCredit Bank. Clients interested in this product obtain more detailed information at Infoline: 800 144 441 or on www.unicreditbank.cz.

This promotional communication entails risks referred to here.

8.3.2016 - Partners decide on family finances together but men have twice as much on average on their accounts

Prague, 8.3.2016

Partners decide on family finances together
but men have twice as much on average on their accounts

Family finances in the Czech Republic are practically dominated by both partners equally. Partners decide on finances together in one half of Czech families. This decision is male-dominated only in three out of ten cases and female-dominated in one fourth of the cases, as shown by the UniCredit Bank’s survey. According to 47% of those surveyed reported that both partners choose the bank which will manage their finances together. However, account balances and turnovers on male-owned accounts are nearly double on average; men also apply for loans and mortgages more frequently. Unfortunately, women in the Czech Republic are still lagging behind also in terms of payroll, earning 22 per cent less on average.

Finances in most Czech households are managed by both partners together, or it is at least claimed so by more than a half of those surveyed (55%). The say in management of family finances is attributed to himself/herself by around forty per cent of men and women, with only five per cent attributing the say in family finances to his/her partner. Accordingly, men choose the bank which should manage the family finances a bit more often, namely in three out of ten Czech families. However, withdrawal of finance is dominated by both partners.

Data concerning the use of banking products, however, indicate that the position of both partners in finances is not completely equal yet. For instance, men have 47 per cent, on average, more finances on their current accounts than women. “The monthly turnover, fifty per cent higher on accounts with male owners, corresponds to this fact. Women use even other products to a lower extent. On average, they take out loans less frequently and if they do, they apply for loans lower by CZK 20 thousand,” explains Petr Plocek, Press Spokesperson of UniCredit Bank.

While the average amount of loans required by men is more than CZK 190 thousand, it is only CZK 170 thousand when requested by women. The situation in bank overdrafts is similar, with bank overdrafts being used one third more by men. Although mortgages are rather a male-dominated issue, they are most often applied for by partners together (46%). “Despite the outcome of the survey, according to our statistics, domestic budget is still rather male-dominated. Men are also more frequently in charge of handling the paperwork or applying for loan. The situation in credit cards is interesting, too; credit card expenses are again dominated by men. Experience has shown that it is not because men would spend more in principle. However, men often take out credit cards for their partners in the name of the man, or pay common bill, let’s say, in a restaurant,” adds Plocek.

Czech women still earn 22% less, with the Czech Republic being at the tail end of Europe
One of the grounds why men are at the top of the banking statistics may be the persistent wage disparities between both genders. According to the Eurostat data, Czech women earn 22 per cent, on average, less than men. Following Estonia and Austria, this is the third largest gap in Europe. Moreover, the wage gap has not gone down by a single per cent over the last five years.

Women also have a more difficult access to the labour market, unemployment of women is nearly two per cent higher than the one of men. There is only 82 per cent of economically active women. It is mainly the offer of part-time jobs, reconciling work and family life, that is missing. While one third to one half of women works part time in Western European countries, it is only 8 per cent in the Czech Republic. As for men, only one per cent of them works part time.

On the contrary, family life is complicated by work in shifts. Czech women work in shifts twice as much as the standard in Europe (28%). On average, they spend 40.5 hours a week in their job, the most in agriculture (42.4 hours), services (42.3 hours) and information technology (41.6 hours).

3.3.2016 - UniCredit Bank launching the first bank kiosks to get still closer to its clients

Prague, 3.3.2016

UniCredit Bank launching the first bank kiosks to get still closer to its clients

Prague, 3 March – A modern design, simple products, personal approach, skilled bankers, business hours including evenings and weekends. All this and much more will be offered by two brand new bank kiosks, which were opened by UniCredit Bank in early March: one in Letňany Shopping Mall, Prague and the other one in Mlyny Shopping Mall, Nitra (Slovakia). The pilot run is to test the new way of extension of own distribution network to locations which are frequently visited by clients and are willing to address their banking needs. UniCredit Bank kiosks in the Czech Republic will offer lucrative consumer financing products with a prompt and easy online negotiation process.  

“Nowadays, if you want be successful in retail banking, you need to get still closer to your clients, to accommodate their needs by simple and available products. That is why we are opening bank kiosks at locations frequently visited by clients and we offer our services to them exactly there where they need them. Moreover, we have a prompt and flexible process of product negotiation prepared for our clients; the process will be fully online, from the start until the end, and all documents will be signed by the client in a non-paper format“, says Giovanni Guidi, Retail Banking Director UniCredit Bank.  

During the pilot run, the offer of UniCredit Bank’s kiosks will be focused on Consumer Finance loans from 30.000 to 1.000.000 and tenure from 12 to 84 months and a competitive and attractive interest rate from 4,9% p.a., which is available to the bank’s clients to make their dreams come true without proving the purpose of the loan or to reduce the existing loan instalments by as much as 30%, or to get further financial funds in addition to the existing loan. Clients applying for a loan will be provided with an option to open a fee-free U Accountwith unlimited free global payments and ATM withdrawals and a unique guarantee of terms for 10 years.  

In both cities, the kiosks will be open every day, including weekends, from ten to nine, i.e., more than 80 hours a week. In the kiosks, clients will be served by skilled bankers from local UniCredit Bank branches. “We believe that this new form of serving our clients conforms to their needs; presently we are already preparing an extension of the kiosk network to other shopping malls in the Czech Republic and in Slovakia and in case of positive response from clients we will gradually improve the offer to include other products“, said Giovanni Guidi.  

UniCredit Bank presently operates 151 points of sale in the Czech Republic and another 74 in Slovakia. For the time being, the bank does not intend to further extend its network of traditional branches, the focus is on digital distribution channels and new ways of serving its clients, including bank kiosks in shopping malls all around the Czech Republic and Slovakia.

25.2.2016 - UniCredit Bank launching the PRESTO Loan for Housing

Prague, 25.2.2016

UniCredit Bank launching the PRESTO Loan for Housing, being the first on the market to offer as much as one million of Czech korunas without collateral

Prague, 25 FebruaryHousehold refurbishment, purchase of a holiday cottage, servicing of building lots or acquisition of a co-operative flats, all of this is offered by the PRESTO Loan for Housing by UniCredit Bank. Clients only have to prove the purpose of the borrowed funds within six months of absorbing the loan, and they are all set. The PRESTO Loan offers as much as CZK 1 million, with no collateral. The loan’s duration is up to 120 months with interest rates starting from 4.9% p.a.

This year, it is expected that about 20 thousand Czech households will start larger refurbishments of their houses and flats. Moreover, given the fact that there are still more than 480 thousand co-operative flats in the Czech Republic, and the financing of such flats through traditional mortgage loans is difficult, the market for favourable consumer loans for housing has a potential of as much as several tens of billions of Czech korunas a year.

We have an excellent solution for all those who are planning to spend on housing-related purposes - for instance, on flat refurbishment, purchase of flat into private ownership, or transfer of a co-operative share. As the first bank on the market, we will offer a loan for housing with no collateral up to 1 million of Czech korunas and with unrivalled interest rates starting from 4.9% p.a.,” says Dalibor Mička, Household Financing Director at UniCredit Bank.

With the PRESTO Loan for Housing, you can get as much as CZK 1 million for all the housing-related purposes, including the combination of more purposes. The bank requires no collateral for the property, you only have to prove the purpose of the funds within six months. Moreover, no co-applicant is required for loans up to CZK 350 thousand. Documents can be dated up to a year prior to the absorption of loan. The loan’s duration is up to 120 months with unique interest rates starting from 4.9% p.a. Administration and maintenance of loans is completely free-of-charge.

The product is based on the popular general-purpose PRESTO Loan. Therefore, it offers benefits related to the product, for instance, the possibility to postpone as much as 5 monthly instalments. In addition to the PRESTO Loan for Housing, you can also take out discounted insurance or the unique free-of-charge U Konto account - however, the mentioned products are not a prerequisite for obtaining a favourable interest rate.

The new PRESTO Loan for Housing is available at all branches of UniCredit Bank or UniCredit Bank Expres.

19.2.2016 - UniCredit Wins Sixteen Euromoney Awards in Private Banking

Vienna, 19.2.2016

UniCredit Wins Sixteen Euromoney Awards in Private Banking

UniCredit Private Banking has again been recognized for its excellent services, winning 16 awards in different regional and local categories in Euromoney magazine´s Private Banking Survey 2016:  

  • Central and Eastern Europe               
    • Best Private Banking Services Overall
    • Net-Worth-Specific Services
    • (sub-category: Super affluent clients USD 1 million to USD 5 million)
    • Commercial Banking Capabilities
  • Austria                                                          
    • Net-Worth-Specific Services
    • (sub-category: Super affluent clients USD 1 million to USD 5 million)
    •  
  • Croatia                                                          
    • Best Private Banking Services Overall
    • Investment Banking Capabilities
    • Commercial Banking Capabilities
    •  
  • Czech Republic                                            
    • Philanthropic Advice
    • Innovative Technology – Client Experience
    • Innovative Technology – Back Office Systems
    •  
  • Italy                                                               
    • Commercial Banking Capabilities
    • Succession Planning Advice and Trusts
    • Innovative Technology – Client Experience
    • Innovative Technology – Back Office Systems
    •  
  • Slovakia                                                        
    • International Clients
    •  
  • Turkey                                                           
    • Philanthropic Advice  

The Euromoney Private Banking Survey is published annually and provides a qualitative as well as quantitative assessment of the best services in private banking, by geography and area of service. The survey is considered as one of the most prestigious in the wealth management industry, since it combines analysis of bank-provided data and peer review. It covers more than 15 different product and client categories on a regional and local basis, and ranks results in 69 countries. Close to 600 institutions from 90 countries took part in the Euromoney Private Banking Survey 2016 with 2,616 responses.  

Jan Tronicek, Head of Private Banking for Central and Eastern Europe (CEE) at UniCredit, said: “Our focus recently is on empowering our clients to gain greater control over their portfolios and to have real-time access to investment information through digital tools. We believe this will enhance client experience and strengthen the loyalty. For this reason we keep investing in both technology as well as competencies of our private bankers, which we consider the key for future success. These awards prove our continuous efforts to be a leader in our business and our dedication to clients.”  

UniCredit Private Banking in CEE provides a full range of products and services to more than 24,500 clients in 9 countries within the Region, with around EUR 11.2 billion in total financial assets. Due to the expertise, the proximity and the stability of UniCredit as a leading European bank, it can leverage its independent view on the markets as well as best-in-class products. UniCredit Private Banking strives to deliver financial services to clients in a comprehensible way and to address the complexity of markets with clear and transparent strategies to protect and optimize client wealth, consistent with their needs.

10.2.2016 - UniCredit Bank Czech Republic and Slovakia, a.s. achieved excellent business results of CZK 5.6 billion in 2015

Prague, 10.2.2016

UniCredit Bank Czech Republic and Slovakia, a.s. achieved excellent business results of CZK 5.6 billion in 2015

10 February 2016 - The preliminary consolidated business results of UniCredit Bank Czech Republic and Slovakia, a. s. for 2015¹:   

  • Consolidated net profit of UniCredit Bank Czech Republic and Slovakia went up by 14.8% yoy. 
  • Customer deposits increased by 10.8% yoy. 
  • Loans to clients grew by 3.5%. 
  • Loans to clients of leasing companies rose by 8.9% yoy. 
  • Consolidated assets went up by 12.2% yoy. 
  • Consolidated capital adequacy is at 14.65 % (non-audited data). 
  • Consolidated equity of the Bank increased by 5.6% compared to the same period a year ago. 
  • UniCredit Bank acquired a number of prestigious awards in 2015. In retail the bank scored thanks to a great consumer loan or a mortgage in Zlatá minca or Finparáda Award. It also achieved  a leading position in the competition Bank of the Year 2015. Euromoney Magazine named it the Best Trade Finance Provider to Companies and Entrepreneurs, Best Bank for Real Estate Financing, and Best Bank in Cash Management. 


The after-tax preliminary consolidated profit of UniCredit Bank Czech Republic and Slovakia increased from CZK 4,911 million (as of 31 December 2014) to CZK 5,640 million (as of 31 December 2015).
Mr Jiří Kunert, CEO and Chairman of the Board of Directors of UniCredit Bank Czech Republic and Slovakia, commented on the results: "The year 2015 was extraordinary for us. We achieved double-digit growth in preliminary consolidated profit. The results prove that our strategy, based on client-base growth, innovations in retail product offerings, client proximity, and provided know-how in corporate banking is the right direction for sustainable growth. Thanks to the synergies within our financial group, we are able to respond flexibly to the rapidly changing needs of Czech and Slovak clients. This year we will continue to focus on the development of electronic distribution channels, where we want to again confirm our role as a leading innovator." 

Items of Profit and Loss Statement
The consolidated net interest income of UniCredit Bank Czech Republic and Slovakia rose to CZK 10,235 million, representing an increase of 1.9% compared to the same period a year ago (as of 31 December 2014: CZK 10,049 million). Consolidated net income from fees and commissions grew by 8% to CZK 3,543 million yoy (as of 31 December 2014: CZK 3,557 million).  

The level of consolidated general administrative expenses increased by 4.7% to CZK 7,507 million (as of 31 December 2014: CZK 7,170 million). Credit risk cost is at CZK 1,441 million (as of 31 December 2014: CZK 2,236 million).  

"In an environment of global uncertainties, overregulation of the banking industry, and low interest rates, we have achieved great business results driven by the growth of revenues (+5% yoy) and an excellent risk situation (-35%). The continuous growth of our client base together with the increasing number of transactions supported fee and commission net income growth in 2015. The bank also leveraged on good trading results. Our liquidity situation is excellent. The consolidated capital adequacy stands at 14.65% prior to profit retention. Both indicators allow the bank further substantial business growth," said Mr Gregor Hofstaetter-Pobst, CFO of UniCredit Bank. 

Balance Sheet  
Simplification in the product offerings and innovation was a key driver for the success in retail. In the lending segment, loans granted to retail clients grew, in particular owing to the 14.2% yoy increase in consumer and mortgage loans. The retail segment has also grown, owing to the revolutionary U konto account, with a ten-year guarantee of conditions and free withdrawals from any ATM at home and abroad. The number of new clients has increased again, with more than 240 thousand clients opening a U konto account.  

Cooperation among the bank and its factoring and leasing subsidiaries allows to exploit the full business potential within corporate segment. Our focus remained on structured financing, with UniCredit Bank Czech Republic and Slovakia participating in a number of transactions both in the Czech Republic and Slovakia. The Bank has also reported further growth in the financing of small and medium-sized enterprises, achieving an excellent 17.3% yoy growth.  

The leasing companies continued to strengthen brand-vehicle financing, credit financing in the area of corporate loans, and operating leasing for businesses and private individuals. In the leasing companies, the financed value of vehicles for 2015 grew by 33% compared to the same period in 2014. All major commodities reported a strong yoy increase - by 49.6% in machinery and equipment, by 28.7% in vehicles up to 3.5 tonnes, and by 29.6 % in vehicles over 3.5 tonnes.  

As of 31 December 2015, assets of UniCredit Bank Czech Republic and Slovakia amounted to CZK 570,484 million, representing a 12.2% increase compared to the figures as of 31 December 2014 (CZK 508,616 million).    

On the assets side of the Balance Sheet, receivables from bank clients increased by 3.5% to a total of CZK 351,542 million compared to the state as of 31 December 2014 (CZK 339,510 million).  

On the liabilities side, liabilities towards clients grew by 10.8% to CZK 363,989 million (31 December 2014: CZK 328,585 million). Liabilities from debt securities rose by 37.5% to CZK 65,019 million (31 December 2014: CZK 47,285 million).  

Equity grew by 5.6% to CZK 61,706 million (as of 31 December 2014: CZK 58,410 million).

8.2.2016 - UniCredit Bank in Cooperation with Ergo Pojišťovna Insurance Company to Provide Travel Insurance with High Insurance Limits

Prague, 8.2.2016

UniCredit Bank in Cooperation with Ergo Pojišťovna Insurance Company to Provide Travel Insurance with High Insurance Limits  

Prague, 8th February UniCredit Bank and ERGO Pojišťovna insurance company have prepared an exclusive offer of travel insurance together. This new offer includes high insurance limits of up to CZK 10,000,000, attractive prices starting from CZK 13 a day and a number of interesting coverages, is valid for new as well as current clients. From the new year, clients interested in taking out travel insurance can do so also on the web pages of UniCredit Bank. Clients can take out not only the regular insurance of medical expenses, but also insurance for their dog, cat, or other pet at reduced prices.  

The travel insurance by ERGO Pojišťovna insurance company is used by almost 200 thousand clients a year. The number of people taking out this service online is growing each year.  “Today, the Czechs travel often and fondly around Europe and overseas to countries where the cost of medical treatment in the event of any injury is very substantial. Paying it out of own pocket can have a massive impact on the family budget for many people, therefore, quality travel insurance with high coverage of travel is a necessity. Moreover, an increasing number of clients appreciates the possibility of taking out travel insurance conveniently and promptly online shortly before their departure,” says Vladimír Juza, Head of Investment and Insurance Products at UniCredit Bank.  

Besides coverage of medical expenses of up to CZK 10,000,000, the joint travel insurance by ERGO Pojišťovna insurance company and UniCredit Bank provides its new and current clients assistance in many other unpleasant life situations. You can take out additional insurance, for instance, for transport of your vehicle back to the CR in the event of health issues of the insured person, or for mountain search. Clients appreciate also the possibility of taking out insurance for cancellation of their trip, including unused holiday, i.e. when they need to interrupt their holiday on imperative grounds and return back to the CR at their own cost. The liability insurance also includes legal coverage.  

The product also provides attractive opportunities for coverage of risk to extreme sports, among others, also leisure and technical diving, free-skiing and heli-skiing, paragliding, climbing, and other. Moreover, the popular skiing and snowboarding on marked ski runs are offered for no extra cost.

2.2.2016 - Mortgages by UniCredit Bank scored in the Financial Product of the Year competition

Mortgages by UniCredit Bank scored in the Financial Product of the Year competition

Prague, 2 February - UniCredit Bank has won an award in the Finparáda.cz – Financial Product of the Year 2015 competition in the Mortgages category. Facing very strong competition, our bank ended up as a runner-up thanks to the innovations introduced in the field of mortgages last year – from seven-year fixed rate mortgages up to online mortgage refinancing. Moreover, our mortgage interest rates were one of the best rates on the market throughout the year.

 

20.1.2016 - A more sustainable growth model is moving forward

Vienna, 20.1.2016

A more sustainable growth model is moving forward

CEE Banking Study 2016

  • Most CEE economies showed strong economic growth in 2015 and proved more resilient towards shifts in investors´ sentiment with regards to emerging markets
  • Overall banking sector profitability is normalizing on a new post-crisis level, still double the one of Western Europe     
  • Growing reliance on local deposits and strong capital adequacy ratios partially diminish past vulnerabilities  

In 2015 the economic environment for banks operating in Central and Eastern Europe (CEE) has been rather positive. Despite some exceptions, most countries in the region showed strong economic growth and resilience against shifts in investors´ sentiment towards emerging markets, which was in good part related to their deep integration with the euro area and the solid macroeconomic fundamentals. Banking sectors in most countries have remained profitable, although the overall level is normalizing compared to the pre-crisis period. These are some of the key findings of the latest CEE Banking Study, which was conducted by UniCredit´s CEE Strategic Analysis department and which covers 13 different countries. Looking forward, economic recovery is expected to further support lending, especially in countries which have been lagging behind so far. Non-performing loans ratios, which are currently high in various countries should decline.  

Most CEE economies have shown 2015 a more dynamic performance than in previous years “Although country-by-country differentiation persists as a regional key feature, there were some positive developments in the banking sectors in CEE. Lending has improved in some countries and the banking sectors remained mostly profitable. A more sustainable funding model is moving forward in CEE, with local deposits becoming a more important funding source”, said Carlo Vivaldi, Head of CEE Division at UniCredit, “Nevertheless banks need to be attentive towards the low interest environment, regulatory pressures, the development of emerging markets, geopolitical tensions and the effects from migration.”    

With GDP growth rates ranging from 0.6 percent in Serbia to 4.3 percent in the Czech Republic in 2015, most CEE countries have shown a more dynamic performance compared to previous years. The only exceptions are Russia, which had to cope with a sharp drop in the oil price and the EU-US sanctions, and Ukraine, which faced and the loss of major production capacities in the Eastern part of the country. Moreover the new EU-members in Central Europe (EU-CEE1) have proved more resilient to the shift in investors’ sentiment towards emerging markets in the second half 2015. In doing so, EU-CEE benefitted from current account surpluses or small deficits due to strong exports into the euro area, low commodity prices and large capital account surpluses due to EU fund inflows. Additional support came from accommodative monetary policy and more robust domestic demand.  

Loans-to-deposits ratio significantly improved, bank lending to accelerate

“Bank lending has improved in some countries, in particular in Central Europe”, stated Mauro Giorgio Marrano, Deputy Head of CEE Strategic Analysis at UniCredit, “The growth dynamics in other countries have been weaker and in some cases also affected by one-off factors. With regards to household loans local currency is gaining weight compared to FX lending meaning past vulnerabilities keep on diminishing.” Most of the local banking sectors have maintained profitability over the past years, the average loans-to-deposits ratio improved significantly from 122 percent 2008 to 101 percent 2015.                                

1This group includes some of the countries that joined the EU in 2004 and 2007, namely Bulgaria, the Czech Republic, Hungary, Poland, Romania and Slovakia. Croatia is to be discussed separately.

Looking forward, UniCredit researchers expect the economic recovery to support lending, especially in countries which so far have been lagging behind. Moreover positive GDP growth in combination with accommodative monetary policies and clean-up activities in countries such as Romania, Slovenia and Hungary should ease the strain from NPLs. Profitability is expected to remain above Western European levels.  

CEE region remains the growth engine for UniCredit

In spite of some challenges, UniCredit considers itself a long-term, strategic investor in Central and Eastern Europe, which is keen to develop its business with both corporate and private customers in the region. In 2015 the banking group has acquired over 1.2 million new customers across all CEE countries, where it has a presence, and it intends to grow its customer base by another 1 million customers each year until 2018. According to its Strategic Plan UniCredit is going to invest EUR 1.2 billion into digitalization aiming equally at matching new trends in customer behaviour and reducing cost. The number of internet banking users is projected to increase from currently 5 million to 10 million and the number of mobile banking users from currently 1 million to 7 million over the next three years.  CEE lending volume is expected to grow by EUR 20 billion to EUR 106 billion in 2018.  

UniCredit is still the banking group number one in Central and Eastern Europe – in terms of network, total assets and geographic diversification. The banking group operates an extensive network of almost 3,100 branches in 13 countries, which generates roughly one quarter of its total revenues. UniCredit in CEE serves more than 25,000 international corporate customers through its International Centers. 2 out of 3 international corporate customers from Germany, Italy and Austria operating in CEE are UniCredit customers. The banking group has a long-established expertise in handling state and EU-supported programs in the CEE region resulting in more than EUR 2 billion facilities dedicated to EU Funds projects approved and another over EUR 1.3 billion agreements signed. UniCredit banks are among the top-banks in their respective home country.  

“Its broad diversification by customers, products and geographies has made CEE region a consistently strong contributor to the Group´s financial results. With the intended transfer of CEE shareholdings directly under UniCredit SpA by year-end 2016 we make another move towards a leaner governance structure as well as a more effective capital and liquidity management”, said Carlo Vivaldi, Head of CEE Division at UniCredit, “We are fully committed to the new Strategic Plan and go ahead with investing into digitalization and Big Data in order to expand our regional customer business.”

18.1.2016 - U-šetřete: Save as much as thousands of korunas a month with a payment card by UniCredit Bank

Prague, 18.1.2016

U-šetřete: Save as much as thousands of korunas a month with a payment card by UniCredit Bank

Prague, 18 January – UniCredit Bank introduces tailor-made discounts with no vouchers or coupons to its clients. Thanks to the new unique programme U-šetřete, all you have to do is activate the offer in your mobile application or on the Internet and pay using any card by UniCredit Bank. You will get your discount automatically, without having to ask for it in advance. Easily, with no limits and disguised conditions.  

"With the U-šetřete programme, your discounts are literally in your pocket. You can easily find the most attractive offers in your vicinity in the mobile application or on the Internet, and activate them, say, when going sales shopping. You don't have to worry about any loyalty cards or paper coupons or to ask for a discount when making payments. Your payment card will handle everything," explains Dalibor Mička, Household Financing Director at UniCredit Bank.  

The U-šetřete programme offers discounts specifically tailored to clients' needs. The offers adapt to their shopping history. An anonymous and easy application of discounts is an advantage. There is no need for vouchers, discount codes or loyalty cards. Clients even do not have to ask for discounts, everything is neatly packed right in the payment card by UniCredit Bank.

It is easy to start saving money. All you have to do is login into the UniCredit Bank Online Banking or fill in a form at a branch, activate the offer and, subsequently, make a payment using your card. When making a payment, clients will be deducted the full amount, and the bank will credit all the money saved twice a month to their current account or credit card. Clients will see how much they saved on the relevant purchase in their mobile application or webpage of the programme as early as in two to three days.  

Clients can participate in the programme free of charge. The offer applies using both debit and credit cards, with no limit as to the amount of money being saved. The list of the U-šetřete programme partners is constantly updated and extended.

4.1.2016 - January sales with a 20% discount on loan? Be smart with UniCredit Bank

Prague, 4.1.2016

Prague, 4 January – A new washing machine for your household, a notebook for school or a new winter ski equipment. You can now buy all this in major sales, saving a couple of thousands from your family budget right at the start of the year. Meeting the needs of those who are trying to save like this, UniCredit Bank grants a 20% discount on the interest rate of its favourite non-specific PRESTO Loan in January, keeping all the other benefits. You can get your loan for anything quickly and easily. Instalments may be set depending on clients' needs and the loan or a part thereof may be repaid at any time.

The popularity of post-Christmas shopping has been rising sharply over last years, with as much as one third of the Czechs planning post-Christmas shopping this year, according to expert estimate. Those who are planning shopping exceeding CZK 30,000 can make use of the new seasonal offer by UniCredit Bank, granting a 20% discount on the interest rate of its non-specific PRESTO Loan from 4 January until 30 January 2016 - you can get unrivalled interest from 3.9% p. a. "January is traditionally the month of sales and, as with the Black Friday, we do not want the discounts to be limited only to traditional shops. Our clients can enjoy a 20% discount on the interest rate throughout this month, making full use of the January sales." notes Dalibor Mička, Household Financing Director at UniCredit Bank.
The PRESTO Loan also entails big time savings for everyone. In practice, it can be handled really quickly – if clients have their ID card, second identity document, confirmation of income and proof of current address, e.g. the most recent phone bill, at UniCredit Bank or UniCredit Bank Expres branches with them, they can shop very soon – clients can receive the money on the very same day.

And what about instalments? If clients have a PRESTO Loan from CZK 30,000 up to CZK 500,000, they can set the amount of instalments depending on their financial situation and spread the repayment over as much as 7 years. Moreover, clients are free to postpone their instalments for as much as five times during the repayment period.

Find out more information on the PRESTO Loan at www.UniCreditBank.cz or in the e-shop at www.UniCreditShop.cz

10.12.2015 - UniCredit Bank named Best Bank in Cash Management in the Czech Republic It is the third time it has been awarded this title!

Prague, 10.12.2015

UniCredit Bank named Best Bank in Cash Management in the Czech Republic It is the third time it has been awarded this title! 

Prague, 10 December UniCredit Bank has again reached the highest rank, succeeding in the competition of the prestigious magazine Euromoney for the best bank in cash management. Besides the Czech Republic, the top rank was also awarded in seven other CEE countries. It is the third title for the Czech Republic, which has a long-standing history of the best results in Cash Management.

"Besides the excellent cash management, clients' experience with the services provided by our banking specialists, Cash Management specialists and colleagues in customer care plays an important part in voting," Jiří Kunert, CEO and Chairman of the Board of UniCredit Bank, comments on being awarded the first place. "Once again we have asserted the strong position of our bank in corporate banking and the third award of Best Bank in Cash Management in the Czech Republic is a clear proof of our clients' long-term satisfaction with our services," Kunert added. 

The survey involved more than 27 thousand representatives of international companies with turnovers exceeding 50 million dollars. Besides the Czech Republic, banks of the UniCredit Group won the highest award also in Austria, Hungary, Croatia, Romania, Turkey, Serbia and Slovenia.

Eight awards in cash management have not been the first awards obtained by the UniCredit Group in CEE this year. In a poll by the British magazine The Banker, it became the region's most innovative bank. UniCredit was also awarded Best Bank in Real Estate Financing in the Czech Republic by the Euromoney magazine; this year, in a regular Trade Finance Survey, it was awarded the title of the Best Corporate Finance Provider to companies and entrepreneurs in CEE in the Czech Republic, Slovakia and eight other countries, and UniCredit also became Best Bank in CEE.

9.12.2015 - UniCredit Bank launches the Pay button for fast and comfortable payments online

Prague, 9.12.2015

UniCredit Bank launches the Pay button for fast and comfortable payments online

To buy in an e-shop and simply pay in just a few clicks in the secure online environment. With no payment cards, time-consuming forms and waiting for the payment to be processed. This will be offered by the new Pay button of UniCredit Bank, which will be available for clients, thanks to cooperation with PayU, from 9 November in one of the leading domestic e-shop  Mall.cz and the price comparison website Heureka.cz.

"Many clients still find, for instance, entering data from their payment cards in the online forms of e-shops, insurmountable. The Pay button constitutes a reliable alternative for them. Using this button, they do not have to enter their payment data anywhere, they only have to confirm the payment directly in their online banking, which they are familiar with. It is nowadays used by more than three fourths of our clients," says Radek Jirka, Manager of Direct Banking of UniCredit Bank.

Clients do not have to register anywhere in order to use this payment method. On 9 December, the Pay button will work for all UniCredit Bank clients using online banking. Thanks to cooperation with PayU, they will find it in one of the leading Czech e-shops Mall.cz and the price comparison website Heureka.cz.

Using the Pay button is simple and intuitive. Once the payment method is selected, the client is redirected to the login page of the online banking. The client finds there an already completed payment order, which must be checked and confirmed. In order to have better overview of one's purchases, clients may use a designated field for their comments, which will appear in the account statement.

The service has also the advantage that e-shops are informed of the payment immediately, so that they can dispatch the goods instantly. In the event of complaints or return of goods, clients are clearly identified and refunds to clients' accounts may be also made without undue delays.

19.11.2015 - UniCredit bringing UEFA Champions League Trophy to Czech and Slovak Cities

Prague, 19.11.2015

UniCredit bringing UEFA Champions League Trophy to Czech and Slovak Cities

Prague, 19 November With the second half of this season’s group stage of UEFA Champions League, the UniCredit UEFA Champions League Trophy Tour also begins. The iconic silver trophy will travel through three Czech and one Slovak towns this year, at the end of November and beginning of December. The Trophy Tour will start in Prague’s OC Harfa already on Friday 20 November. On the journey the cup will be accompanied by tour ambassador Vladimír Šmicer, former top footballer and the first Czech winner of UEFA Champions League from 2005. The UniCredit Group has been a proud official bank of UEFA Champions League for the seventh year.

“It is a life experience to see the UEFA Champions League cup live. For us, the Trophy Tour is a unique opportunity to bring UEFA Champions League, and UniCredit  Bank, of course, closer to people, moreover, we can personally meet football fans throughout Europe. I am glad that after the last year’s stop in Bratislava, this year the trophy will travel through three Czech towns and return to Slovakia as well,“ Jiří Kunert, UniCredit Bank CEO and Chairman of the Board of Directors says.

Guy-Laurent Epstein, UEFA Events SA Marketing Director commented: “We are delighted to once again partner with UniCredit to tour the UEFA Champions League Trophy across Europe for the seventh consecutive time and thereby giving football fans in Czech Republic, Slovakia and Bulgaria the chance to come close to one of the most prestigious assets of the competition.”

This year’s Trophy Tour will start in the Czech metropolis on 20 – 22 November. The cup will be exhibited in OC Harfa in Prague on Friday and Saturday morning. On Saturday, in the afternoon, it will be moved to Náměstí Jana Palacha, where it will stay until Sunday. On the day of fifth matches of the group stage, 24 November, the trophy will arrive to Liberec, to Dr. Edvard Beneš square  and one day later, to the Nisa shopping centre. From Friday 27 November to Sunday 29 November , the fans can take the phot with the cup in Pilsen at Olympia shopping centre. This time, the Slovaks can see the trophy in Trnava in the City Arena shopping centre and on Dolné Bašty Street at the beginning of December.

Within the UEFA Champions League Trophy Tour, the trophy will be exhibited in four European towns in a specially adapted truck. The purpose of the action is to draw attention and raise interest of the public, to bring and spread the football atmosphere to the whole town. Thus, fans will be able to see the trophy within this year’s Trophy Tour at squares and in shopping centres of European football towns. 

Within the Trophy Tour, fans will also be able to meet the tour ambassador, former top midfielder Vladimír Šmicer, who won the Champions League himself in the season 2004/2005, in the last year of his playing career in Liverpool. Despite his coming to the field in the final against AC Milan only during the break, in the adverse situation 0:3, with his goal and subsequently converted penalty in the decisive shoot-out he significantly contributed to the turn and victory of his club. So far, he has been the only Czech goal-kicker in Champions League finals.

For UniCredit, UEFA Champions League is the most notable football action under way providing a wide variety of opportunities in the area of marketing, communication and brand building as part of UniCredit’s global as well as local plans. The role of official sponsor in the past six years has increased UniCredit’s brand knowledge, improved its image and increased the commitment of both clients and employees.

Find more information about official sponsorship at www.unicredit.eu/champions.

UEFA Champions League Trophy Tour 2015 stops in the Czech Republic and in Slovakia

Friday 20 November             Prague, OC Harfa (9 a.m.  –  9 p.m.)

Saturday 21 November       Prague, OC Harfa (9 a.m.  –  12 p.m.) / Náměstí Jana Palacha (2 p.m. – 6 p.m.)¨                                                      
Autograph with Vladimír Šmicer (10 a.m.  –  11 a.m.)

Sunday 22 November          Prague, Náměstí Jana Palacha (10 a.m.  –  7 p.m.)                                                      
Autograph with Vladimír Šmicer (10 a.m.  –  11 a.m.)

Tuesday 24 November        Liberec, Náměstí Edvarda Beneše (10 a.m.  –  7 p.m.)

Wednesday 25 November Liberec, OC Nisa (9 a.m.  –  9 p.m.)

Friday 27 November             Pilsen, OC Olympia (9 a.m.  –  9 p.m.)

Saturday 28 November       Pilsen, OC Olympia (9 a.m.  –  9 p.m.)

Sunday 29 November          Pilsen, OC Olympia (9 a.m.  –  9 p.m.)

Wednesday 2 December    Trnava, OC City Aréna (9 a.m.  –  9 p.m.)

Thursday 3 December         Trnava, OC City Aréna (9 a.m.  –  1 p.m.) / Dolné Bašty Str. (2 p.m. – 7 p.m.)

Friday 4 December                Trnava, Dolné Bašty Str. (10 a.m.  –  7 p.m.)

18.11.2015 - Fast and easy money transfer? No problem with QR payments in the new Smart Banking from UniCredit Bank.

Prague, 18.11.2015

Fast and easy money transfer? No problem with QR payments in the new Smart Banking from UniCredit Bank.

 Bratislava, 18 November Copying of data from post remittances and invoices is a thing of the past. Just simply scan your bar code or QR code and UniCredit Bank mobile banking will complete the whole payment for you. QR codes can also be used for fast money transfers between friends. You just need to create a code for the particular payment directly in your application and send it to your friends.  This unique novelty is brought to you by an update of the Smart Banking application for Android and iOS.

“If you shop together with your friends or if you go with them to a pub and you take the whole bill or if you borrow money from your colleague, you no longer need to send sensitive payment data needed for the settlement of the debt. Moreover, you also do not have to bother with copying numbers from your utility bills, for example. The update of our mobile banking allows you to easily generate a QR code which you can send in any way or show on the display of your phone,” explains Carmelo Minardi, Head of Multi-Channel Banking of UniCredit Bank.

With the new functionality of the mobile application, you can pay your bills and invoices fast and easy by using your integrated bar code and QR code reader. So, the complicated filling up of payment data with a small mobile phone keyboard is now over. In addition to faster and easier payments, the simple scanning of codes will also prevent possible typing errors. QR code can also be created directly in the application and sent to your friends. The code for the payment can not only be scanned, but also selected from the phone’s gallery. 

The number of users of the Smart Banking mobile application from UniCredit Bank is growing rapidly. “For the first eight months, the number of clients who downloaded the application has doubled compared to the entire past year. Mobile banking is used now by every third client of UniCredit Bank. The number of mobile transactions grows with the number of users, namely by 175 per cent yoy,” said Radek Jirka, Manager of Direct Banking of UniCredit Bank. Approximately two thirds of mobile banking users are clients who have Android smart phones, while Apple iOS creates approximately one third. The share of applications on Windows Phone and other mobile platforms is insignificant. 

The new version of Smart Banking application is already available. Existing clients just need to update their application. Login data, including PIN code to the application and the Smart Key do not change. New clients can download the app and simply connect it with their account by means of a request available in the UniCredit Online banking. Should you have any problems with the installation and setup of the app, we are ready to help you at any UniCredit Bank branch.

12.11.2015 - UniCredit Bank Czech Republic and Slovakia, a.s. boosting its position: 24.4 per cent growth of its consolidated net profit in the first three quarters of 2015

Prague, 12.11.2015

UniCredit Bank Czech Republic and Slovakia, a.s. boosting its position: 24.4 per cent growth of its consolidated net profit in the first three quarters of 2015 

  • Consolidated net profit went up by 24.4% yoy to CZK 4.6 billion compared to the results of the UniCredit Bank Czech Republic and Slovakia financial group for the same period a year ago.
  • Compared to 30 September 2014, loans to clients went up by 7.4% on a consolidated basis.
  • New financing provided to clients of leasing companies grew by 42.3% yoy.
  • Customer deposits increased by 19.1% yoy.
  • Consolidated assets of the financial group rose by 15.8% yoy.
  • Consolidated capital adequacy is at 14.54% (non-audited data).
  • UniCredit Bank was named Best Bank in real estate financing by the prestigious magazine Euromoney.   

Prague, 12 November – The after-tax consolidated profit of UniCredit Bank Czech Republic and Slovakia rose from CZK 3,680 million (as of 30 September 2014) to CZK 4,576 million (as of 30 September 2015). Mr. Jiří Kunert, CEO and Chairman of the Board of Directors of UniCredit Bank Czech Republic and Slovakia, commented on the results:  

"The consolidated net profit continues to grow at a dynamic pace, being above the average of both markets where we operate. Despite the strong competitive environment, the two-digit increase of customer deposits demonstrates the clients' confidence in our financial group. Factors, such as low interest rates, recovery in the real estate market, favourable conditions in financial markets and, in particular, a keen interest of clients in our innovative products and services, have once again contributed to the considerable growth of not only consumer and mortgage lending, but also mainly of corporate lending, where high investment activity is observed especially in the manufacturing segment. We have strengthened our leading position also thanks to the sharp growth of the volume of new financing granted to clients of leasing companies, which rose by 42.3% yoy."     

Items of Profit and Loss Statement

Consolidated net interest income of UniCredit Bank Czech Republic and Slovakia went up to CZK 7,813 million, representing an increase of 4% compared to the same period a year ago (as of 30 September 2014: CZK 7,511 million). Consolidated net income from fees and commissions grew by 8.8% to CZK 2,923 million yoy (as of 30 September 2014: CZK 2,686 million).  

The level of consolidated general administrative expenses increased by 3.4% to CZK 5,498 million (as of 30 September 2014: CZK 5,316 million). Consolidated credit risk cost dropped to CZK 1,071 million yoy, representing a decline by 36.7% compared to a year ago (as of 30 September 2014: CZK 1,692 million).  

"We strongly focus on the sustainable growth of net interest income while maintaining the quality of the loan portfolio. We have achieved exceptional business results, which prove our flexibility to adapt to the current market conditions. The increasing number of new clients in the Czech Republic and Slovakia and, at the same time, the dynamic growth of lending both in the retail and corporate sector are among the key drivers of our excellent business results. The increase of administrative expenses is fully under our control and it is solely related to the development of our business activities. Owing to our ongoing prudential approach and high quality of the loan portfolio, the cost of credit risk is falling by a solid 36.7% this year," said Mr. Gregor Hofstaetter-Pobst, CFO of UniCredit Bank.  

Balance Sheet

As of 30 September 2015, consolidated assets of UniCredit Bank Czech Republic and Slovakia amounted to CZK 590,083 million, representing a 16% increase compared to the figures as of 30 September 2014 (CZK 509,640 million).    

On the assets side of the consolidated Balance Sheet, receivables from clients increased by 7.4 % to a total of CZK 354,106 million compared to the state as of 30 September 2014 (CZK 329,601 million).  

On the liabilities side, the volume of customer deposits rose by 19.1% to CZK 348,186 million (30 September 2014: CZK 292,240 million). Bank liabilities evidenced by certificates went up by 56.8 % to CZK 71,065 million (30 September 2014: CZK 45,326 million).  

Consolidated equity of the bank grew by 6% to CZK 60,245 million (as of 30 September 2014: CZK 56,815 million).    

In retail banking, mortgage loans driven by the recovery in the real estate market and record-low interest rates went up by 16.1% yoy. Consumer loans rose by 11.8%. Interest in the fee-free U konto (U Account) is growing, with more than 218,000 clients taking full advantage of the account with all the benefits.  

Loans granted to large corporate clients increased by 12.3%. The dynamic growth of loans continued also in the segment of small and medium-sized enterprises, namely by 18.3% yoy.

In leasing companies, new financing of vehicles rose by 42.3% yoy. The strongest yoy percentage growth was reported by machinery and equipment (60%), vehicles over 3.5 tonnes (47.6%) and vehicles up to 3.5 tonnes (32%).  

Note for editors:

The consolidated net profit of the UniCredit Bank Czech Republic and Slovakia, a.s. financial group includes the results of UniCredit Bank and UniCredit Leasing in the Czech Republic and Slovakia as well as the results of UniCredit Factoring Czech Republic and Slovakia, a.s.

3.11.2015 - UniCredit Bank together with EGAP provides PhosAgro credit of EUR 73.4 million

Prague, 3.11.2015

UniCredit Bank together with EGAP provides PhosAgro credit of EUR 73.4 million 

Prague, 3 November UniCredit Bank Czech Republic and Slovakia and JSC PhosAgro-Cherepovets, together with EGAP, concluded an agreement to provide the company with a long-term export buyer's credit in the total amount of EUR 73.4 million (over CZK 2 billion). The credit will be used by PhosAgro-Cherepovets to finance the import of equipment from the Czech company CHEMOPROJECT NITROGEN a.s. for construction of a granulated urea production line

“Czech exporters to Russia in sectors like machine building, metallurgy and chemicals remain active, as confirmed by this transaction. This is the largest loan covered by EGAP that we have ever issued to a Russian company. UniCredit Group’s strong position in the Russian market also played an important role in organising this financing,” said UniCredit Bank Czech Republic and SlovakiaManagement Board Chairman Jiří Kunert.

“UniCredit Bank in Russia and PhosAgro are long-time strategic partners,” said AO UniCredit Bank Chairman of the Management Board Mikhail Alekseev, “We are interested in long-term cooperation with our corporate clients and we seek to offer them the right solutions to achieve their goals effectively with the support of UniCredit’s international presence.”

In 2014, a contract was signed between CHEMOPROJECT NITROGEN a.s., Czech Republic, as the exporter and AO PhosAgro–Cherepovets, Russia, as the customer for designing, complete deliveries of equipment and commissioning of a urea production unit, including a 1,500 tonne/day granulation unit. Construction and assembly will be handled by the customer. The value of the contract exceeds CZK 2.3 billion and the project is due to be completed in 2017. Delivery times and quality of the entire project are secured by experienced specialists from CHEMOPROJECT NITROGEN a.s.

To date, the customer has already received the process design package, basic design, confirmation of ordering key deliveries, etc. Preparation for implementation of the project is underway at the moment. Material deliveries shall commence at the start of 2016.

PhosAgro is Europe’s largest, and the world's third-largest producer of phosphate-based fertilizers, selling its production output to 100 countries. PhosAgro is one of the key clients of AO UniCredit Bank in Russia, which has significantly contributed to the closing of this transaction. UniCredit has structured the financing in the form of confirmed letters of credit in combination with post-financing and subsequent refinancing through long-term credit. UniCredit Bank in Russia also acted as a Passport Bank. Issuance of the advance payment bond represents an integral part of this transaction. This structure of financing will guarantee a spread of credit repayment for the investor depending on his cash-flow model.

The export buyer's credit is insured by the Export Guarantee and Insurance Corporation (“EGAP)”). This credit became one of the largest transactions insured in the Czech Republic this year. 

According to the credit insurer EGAP this deal meets the criteria which has been set for trading with Russia. Jan Procházka, CEO of EGAP said: " Even though Czech exports to Russia have declined somewhat in the last year, EGAP has consistently said it will support guarantees for the export of high-tech equipment to Russia, even if we have taken a more cautious approach following the rouble devaluation. New transactions must have an acceptable level of risk: in this case both the experienced domestic exporter and the borrower fully meet the key criteria for export insurance. PhosAgro is a leader in the global fertilizer market, has international credit ratings and enjoys significant foreign currency revenue.”

PhosAgro CEO Andrey Guryev said: “After receiving a USD 440.6 million syndicated loan from JBIC to finance the construction of our new 760 ths tonne/year ammonia line, PhosAgro has agreed to a 12-year loan from UniCredit with cover from EGAP at an interest rate below 3%. 

“In an environment of limited access to long-term financing, PhosAgro has once again proven it is a first-class borrower. I would like to thank our Czech colleagues for this productive cooperation.”

15.10.2015 - Business that makes the world a better place. The programme to foster social entrepreneurship in the Czech Republic is starting

Prague, 15.10.2015

Business that makes the world a better place. The programme to foster social entrepreneurship in the Czech Republic is starting

Can business be connected with helping others and making the world around us better? The increasing number of entrepreneurs in the Czech Republic shows that it is possible. UniCredit Bank and UniCredit Foundation have decided, in cooperation with the Via Foundation, to support this optimistic trend of social entrepreneurship development with a special grant programme.

What will the selected social enterprises get? A grant of up to CZK 340,000 and further support, for instance professional advisory and workshops. Applications may be submitted by any entrepreneur who has an interesting idea and wants to start a social enterprise, as well as by any existing social entrepreneur who needs to improve the operation of their company. 

Pavel Hušek, project manager at the Via Foundation explains what exactly social entrepreneurship entails. "These entrepreneurs often employ disadvantaged disabled people or develop environmentally friendly technologies. In short, they don't just seek profit alone, they are also interested in transforming their neighbourhood or the entire society," he says.

In some cases, profit and helping others go directly hand in hand. It is shown for instance by the Pasparta publishing house, which has autistic employees. "Autistic people have many advantages compared with other employees. They pay attention to detail and they are exceptionally precise, which is great, say, for design activities," Martin Mařík, director of the publishing house, says.

UniCredit Bank, together with UniCredit Foundation, is a partner of the Better Business programme. "For UniCredit Bank the support of entrepreneurs and companies always stand in the bank´s ranking at the forefront of priorities. However, we always strive to give something extra to the business sector. Thus, within the Better Business programme, we focus, besides financial aid, on projects with an ambition of long-term sustainability and with a view to changing the society, helping employ disadvantaged people or people with disabilities," Petr Plocek, Press Spokesperson of UniCredit Bank, explains.

"Social enterprises may provide an excellent offer of products and services; moreover, they are able to respond quickly to the current social challenges of our society. We see a strong future in fostering the development of social entrepreneurship and the deep interconnections it is able to create between the for-profit and the non-profit sectors, The financial sustainable experiences of social business contributes to the development of the whole market, by also positively contaminating the way of doing business of traditional companies," says Maurizio Carrara, Chairman of UniCredit Foundation.

Companies can apply for the Better Business programme by 16 November, and an independent committee will decide on the beneficiaries of the grant. Specific conditions are published on the Via Foundation web page (www.nadacevia.cz).

Interesting stories from the last year's Better Business programme:

Autonapůl – A company for people who occasionally need a car. A company which seeks innovative and environmentally friendly solutions. Autonapůl is a pioneer of the so-called car sharing in the Czech Republic. See more: www.autonapul.org

Nakladatelství Pasparta – A publishing house primarily publishing books on autism. They also have autistic employees, and use their specific abilities to make their work better and more effective. See more: www.pasparta.cz

Projekt Strojovna – Strojovna is an open creative studio. Anyone can sew, repair or manufacture anything here. The project helps preserve traditional handwork techniques, promoting sustainable consumption at the same time. See more: www.strojovna.com

 

Information for editors

The VIA Foundation supports and strengthens the public participation in the development of a democratic society in the Czech Republic. It supports the development of good relationships and co-operation between non-profit organizations, local authorities and businessmen as it believes that is a path where people can assume responsibility for the environment they live in – to think and speak about it, jointly plan changes and then jointly change such plans into reality. It supports the growth of non-profit organizations because they are irreplaceable on the path to the civic society. It supports the growth of donation because neither a civic society nor non-profit organizations can exist without support provided from enlightened individuals, companies and institutions.

UniCredit Bank Czech Republic and Slovakia belongs to the largest banks on the Czech and Slovak market. UniCredit Bank’s sponsor activities focus in particular on art and cultural heritage, the Bank ranks to the largest supporters of artists and musicians and has been co-operating with many significant artistic institutions or projects. The Bank also participates in many projects in the area of sport and education.

The UniCredit Foundation is a corporate foundation, established in 2003 with the aim at contributing to the development of solidarity and philanthropy in communities and geographic areas where the UniCredit Group is present (17 countries between Europe and Central Asia). Through provision of funds and managerial skills, the UniCredit Foundation fosters both projects with wide social impact and activities carried out by local non-profit organisations. The implementation of projects enables employees to make a contribution within the cultural inclusion of the bank. Over recent 10 years, the Foundation has implemented more than 400 projects and initiatives in a total of more than EUR 100 million locally invested.  (www.unicreditfoundation.org).

2.10.2015 - UniCredit awarded “Most Innovative Investment Bank in CEE 2015”

Vienna, 2.10.2015

UniCredit awarded “Most Innovative Investment Bank in CEE 2015”

The Banker, the renowned UK-basedmagazine for banking and finance professionals, has awarded UniCredit “Most Innovative Investment Bank in Central and Eastern Europe 2015”.

According to the jury UniCredit has shown innovation in the bondmarket through transactions such as Republic of Bulgaria's triple-tranche bond issue as well as in areas including real estate and project finance. UniCredit's CEEM&A advisory business is amongst the leading in the region, showing innovation in crossborder transactions within CEE as well as outside and in takeovers with private equity involvement.

The Banker's editor Brian Caplen said: "Congratulations to everyone at UniCredit for being ourmost innovative investment bank fromCentral and Eastern Europe. The judges were impressed with the range of expertise shown by the bank across a number of areas such as real estate financing, bond underwriting, public private partnerships andM&A. A standout deal was Bulgaria’s first ever triple-tranche bond offering including the longest evermaturity for the sovereign. This is a truly impressive all round performance from UniCredit."

“I amproud of this internationally acclaimed award,which is a well-deserved acknowledgement of the outstanding work of our teamand proof of our sustainable achievements in a challenging business. I´d like to thank all of our staff for their constant commitment,” said Carlo Vivaldi, Head of CEE Division at UniCredit. “We do not differentiate between investment banking and corporate banking, but offer our customers an unrivalled combination of in-depth expertise, a geographically broad presence and a wide range of services instead.We strive for adding value by tailor-made solutions,”Mr Vivaldi added.

The awards, presented at the Investment Banking Awards´ dinner last night in London, were determined by a jury of experienced journalists chaired by The Banker’s editor, Brian Caplen.

29.9.2015 - CEE in the autumn of 2015 is the new safe haven

Vienna, 29.9.2015

CEE Quarterly 4Q15

CEE in the autumn of 2015 is the new safe haven   

  • EU-CEE1 sub-region economies buoyed by fledging recovery in the euro area (EA) and financial markets safeguarded by strong external positions and prudent policies
  • EU-CEE currencies and asset prices, unlike other EMs, barely budged during recent turbulence, transforming the region into a “safe haven” for investors in EM 
  • Ongoing market volatility entails risks which vary widely across countries, but global macroeconomic outlook remains favourable for CEE and the region, despite its heterogeneity, looks better positioned than most other large EM to cope with potential challenges.    

UniCredit’s CEE Quarterly 4Q 2015 found that market volatility spiked in 3Q15, with the uncertainty surrounding the anticipated Fed rate hike augmented by growing worries about a “hard landing” in China.  Against this backdrop, EM assets suffered with currencies depreciating, bond and equity prices soaring and growth prospects weakening. In CEE, the difficult external environment amplified the growing divergence within the region. While the region’s two largest economies – Russia and Turkey – suffered, the rest weathered the latest market disturbance largely unscathed.  

The resilience of EU-CEE  

Growth in the EU-CEE continued at a brisk pace in 2Q15 and short-term indicators suggest that the momentum will be sustained in 3Q15. We expect real GDP to rise 2-3.5% for the year as a whole, slightly above potential. If growth was initially led by exports spurred by the recovery in the EU, now it has shifted towards domestic demand. Falling unemployment, firmer wage growth and inflation at historical lows have boosted consumption, while incrased EU fund absorption has boosted investment. At the same time, external positions are strong with export growth, although below its impressive 1Q15 pace, remaining solid, and current accounts in surplus or near balance. External financing has been plentiful, supporting currencies and creditworthiness perceptions.  

“With small direct exposure to China and on the winning side of the commodity price rout, the EU-CEE is increasingly viewed as a safe haven among EM”. says Lubomir Mitov, Chief CEE Economist at UniCredit.  

As for the other countries in the region,Turkey  has failed to benefit from the positive developments in the EU, the lower oil prices or the global liquidity glut.  

Russia has been the major loser from the reversal of the commodity cycle. With 75% of export receipts and nearly half of government revenues coming from oil and natural gas, the renewed dip in oil prices since July has dealt a major blow to the already weakened economy with access to markets hampered by the ongoing sanctions. In Ukraine, which has been hit by an unprecedented financial and geopolitical crisis, the economy at least seems to have bottomed out in 2Q15. Real GDP, industrial output and retail sales all stabilized during the summer or have shown tentative growth, albeit from a very low level.  

Croatia and Serbia were helped out of recession by the recovery in the EA, but growth in both will be lackluster this year at less than 1%. This partly reflects the far smaller share of merchandise exports than in the EU-CEE that has limited the positive impact of the rebound in Europe. Unlike the EU-CEE, domestic demand has yet to recover, constrained by significant and growing macroeconomic imbalances that have weighed on confidence and constrained the policy response.

Outlook: Going in different directions  

Developments to date point to an increasingly divergent outlook for the CEE sub-regions. Our near-term projections are based on assumptions about a further slight acceleration in EA and U.S. growth, commodity prices stabilizing in 2016 with moderate upward potential, a “soft landing” in China and a gradual path of Fed rate hikes. The ECB is expected to continue with its QE program as initially planned.  

As Lubomir Mitov explains, “Under these assumptions, the global backdrop for CEE should be positive. However, the outlook is vastly different for the different sub-regions reflecting varying macroeconomic vulnerabilities, integration with the EU, policies and the state of reforms. Judging by these criteria, the EU-CEE is best positioned to benefit from the favorable global environment”.

Next year, growth in the EU-CEE should remain robust, again above potential. A slight slowdown can be expected in countries that have relied the most on EU funds for investment, with their absorption set to dip during the transition between the two EU budgets everywhere except for Poland. However, most of the slowdown in EU-funded investment should be offset by firming consumption, as tighter labour markets result in higher wage growth. With growth well balanced, external positions should remain stable. Given the preponderance of FDI-related flows and the strong fundamentals, we see little if any risks for external financing.  

The key conclusion is that the CEE region, despite its heterogeneity, looks better positioned than most other large EM to cope with potential challenges.

1EU-CEE are the new EU members in Central Europe, which includes some of the countries that joined the EU in 2004 and 2007, namely Bulgaria, the Czech Republic, Hungary, Poland, Romania and Slovakia. Croatia is addressed separately.

22.9.2015 - UniCredit Bank launches refinancing of mortgages online with express handling

Prague, 22.9.2015

Do you want to refinance your mortgage at any time and any place, and to handle it all in a week? Do you also want to cut your interest rate down to 1.69% p.a.? It's no problem with UniCredit Bank. Following a successful pilot operation, the bank launches the refinancing of mortgage loans Online. Clients can transfer and refinance their mortgage at unicreditshop.cz virtually in one stroke. They can do it all from the comfort of their home, easily, quickly and with express approval Online in just 48 hours after provision of all documents. Moreover, clients have their own Online banker, accompanying them throughout the process. 

…I did not even notice that I was refinancing my mortgage, one of the first clients from Liberec wrote. 

You were so quick that the rival banks could not even respond, a client from Brno said to her online banker.

"The first reactions of clients are a clear message to us that today you can smoothly handle even refinancing of mortgage via the Internet. Not only will you save money thanks to the favourable interest rates, but only with UniCredit Bank you will experience a personal approach of your online banker and express handling, all of this from the comfort of your home. You can spend the time saved due to quick handling with those who are close to you," emphasizes Carmelo Minardi, Head of Multi-Channel Banking at UniCredit Bank.

All clients have to do is scan all documents for their mortgage loan or take a picture of them by phone, and then record and download them via a web application at unicreditshop.cz safely and comfortably. Once all the required information and contracts have been provided, UniCredit Bank will ensure, subject to fulfilment of all conditions, approval of the loan in 48 hours. From here, then, all that is required is to sign the contract.

Besides the significant time savings, clients save also considerable funds owing to the favourable rates and zero charges for the provision and maintenance of the loan. In simplified refinancing clients do not need to provide the bank with any income statements. The bank accepts original appraisals of real estate, otherwise it provides them for free. We always guarantee early mortgage instalments free of charge, up to 20% of the principal. 

Try refinancing your mortgage online https://www.unicreditshop.cz/hypoteka-online

Information for editors: 

With the possibility of refinancing a mortgage online, the bank takes a positive attitude to the trends and increasing demand for purchasing banking products on the Internet. Around one third of the Czechs using banking e-shops ordered a banking product or service via the Internet in the past. Mortgage loans are no exception which people would like to handle only in person at branches. In an exclusive survey for UniCredit Bank, nearly one half of the Czechs using the Internet on a regular basis stated that they are open to applying for their mortgage online. It applies to entirely new mortgage clients as well as to people already repaying their mortgage for some time. As much as one half of them is planning to get a better deal on their existing mortgage loan very shortly.   In general, the Czechs are old hands at shopping via the Internet. According to the Czech Statistical Office, every third Czech of at least sixteen years of age is shopping on the Internet today. The Czechs are known for not letting them being limited in any matter whatsoever, shopping included. Moreover, they already spend, on average, more than 20 hours a week online, which is almost one whole day.

Information about the survey

The survey of purchasing behaviour of banking products on the Internet by Czech and Slovak households was conducted for UniCredit Bank by the Data Collect agency on an online panel. The survey took place in the first quarter of 2015 in a sample of 1,000 citizens of the Czech Republic and 1,000 citizens in Slovakia. In both countries, the age of respondents ranged from 18 to 64 years.

14.9.2015 - The Smart klíč application for a free-of-charge login to the Online Banking is used by 30% UniCredit Bank users and their number is constantly increasi

Prague, 14.9.2015

More than 30% of the UniCredit Bank mobile banking users use also the Smart klíč application (a token in their mobile phones) to log in to and sign transactions in the Online Banking. UniCredit Bank provides its clients with the Smart klíč application free of charge, from January 2014. Also the number of the mobile Smart Banking users is growing dynamically, having doubled on a year-on-year basis. Moreover, the number of transactions made via mobile phones increased by 150%.  

"With the free Smart klíč application by UniCredit Bank, everything is much faster, more convenient and safer than entering the usual authorisation SMS, and it works even without an Internet connection. You can thus log in to the Online Banking and confirm your transaction anywhere in the whole wide world," Carmelo Minardi, Head of Multichannel UniCredit Bank, emphasizes.  

The mobile Smart Banking by UniCredit Bank is already used by every third client of the bank. During the first eight months of this year, it has been downloaded by twice as many clients as during the entire last year. Also the number of transactions made via mobile phones is growing; by 150% yoy on average in the Czech Republic and by 75% in Slovakia. UniCredit Bank further confirms its position of a leader in the Czech and Slovak market in terms of the number of supported types of mobile phones of over 90% from among all mobile devices.  Roughly two thirds of mobile banking users represent Android smartphone owners, with iOS accounting for a one-third share and the Windows Phone platform accounting for a minor share (1%), too. However, nowadays the online access to banks is used by most clients, with the standard Online Banking being used by three fourths of all UniCredit Bank clients.  

Information for editors:   Smart klíč by UniCredit Bank is a universal application to log in to the Online Banking and confirm transactions. The application can be used free of charge; moreover, it is very easy and convenient for clients. In order to generate authorisation codes via the Smart klíč application, your mobile phone does not have to be connected to the Internet; it can be used, for instance, abroad even if clients do not have their roaming services active in their mobile phones. This is except the download itself and the initial activation of the application.

11.9.2015 - UniCredit to Address Czech Exporters at the International Engineering Fair in Brno

Prague, 11.9.2015

UniCredit Bank and UniCredit Leasing, leaders in financing of small and medium-sized enterprises as well as large corporates in the Czech market, are to introduce their services at the upcoming International Engineering Fair in Brno. The presentation will focus on corporate financing, export financing and leasing services. Visit UniCredit Bank and UniCredit Leasing at the International Engineering Fair in Brno at booth 18 in the Z pavilion.  

The Czech economy is increasingly exploiting export opportunities. It is proved not only by the successful stories of domestic enterprises in foreign markets but also by the increasing share of export and cross-border trade in the Czech GDP. Machines, devices or vehicles – engineering sectors in which the Czech Republic excels in the long run – form an essential part of export.  

"As a strong partner with international background, we are helping Czech and Slovak enterprises push their quality products and services through in a highly competitive global market. Compared to the end of 2014, the volume of our export financing for the first eight months of this year increased by 89%," Jiří Kunert, Chairman of the Board and CEO of UniCredit Bank Czech Republic and Slovakia, says.  

UniCredit Bank is a traditional supporter of Czech enterprises in investments in the new and existing export markets all over the world. In Latin America, it helps exploit the immense potential in particular in the energy and mining industry, together with environmental protection technologies. It finances also investments into Southeast Asia and Africa. Recently, using an appropriate combination of banking products, the bank has helped complete, for instance, a half-billion project of building a brewery in Ethiopia; it finances the export of technologies and services to Egypt and an infrastructural project to Azerbaijan. With the support of Export and Guarantee Insurance Corporation EGAP, the bank mediated also a unique investment into Laos, amounting to CZK 1.5 billion, with the second stage of this project being negotiated currently. Mainly owing to the cooperation with its affiliate AO UniCredit Moscow, it is one of the few banks that has not stopped financing into Russia, being one of the most active from among the Czech banks in this respect.  

The bank's presentation at the booth will be accompanied by UniCredit Leasing, one of the leaders in the non-bank financing market and a part of the UniCredit Bank financial group. At the fair, it will introduce its wide range of support for exporters, among other things, in the form of financing of machines, devices and agricultural machinery, breaking down the myth that leasing is primarily focused on the financing of vehicles, machines or buildings. For UniCredit Leasing is able to finance many of the Czech exporters' needs, offering numerous ways of refinancing the investment projects of each and every client. In recent years, there has been an increasing demand of clients for intermediation of leasing financial products, which provide the required investments with minimum or even zero initial cost.  

UniCredit Bank is extensively experienced in export financing. In January 2015, the prestigious financial magazine Euromoney once again acknowledged the quality of its services by granting the highest award in the Best Trade Finance Bank competition to the bank. Being named the Best Project Finance House in 2013, the bank received such award for the second time in a row in the region of Central and Eastern Europe. UniCredit Bank is also the general partner of the DHL Export Award, a prestigious award for small and medium-sized enterprises able to succeed in foreign markets.

6.8.2015 - UniCredit Bank Czech Republic and Slovakia again reported strong business results in the first half of 2015

Prague, 6.8.2015

UniCredit Bank Czech Republic and Slovakia again reported strong business results in the first half of 2015 and its consolidated net profit grew by 25.6% yoy

  • Consolidated net profit went up by 25.6% yoy to CZK 3.1 billion compared to last year's half-yearly results of the UniCredit Bank Czech Republic and Slovakia financial group.
  • Operating income rose by 12% yoy. • Compared to 30 June 2014, loans to clients grew by 8.3%.
  • Customer deposits increased by 14.5% yoy.
  • Total assets went up by 15% yoy.
  • Consolidated capital adequacy is at 15.54% (non-audited data).
  • UniCredit Bank was the first one in the Czech and Slovak market to introduce an innovation in mobile banking – a fingerprint logon to the Smart Banking and Smart Key mobile applications.
  • UniCredit was named Best Bank in Central and Eastern Europe by the prestigious Euromoney magazine. 


The after-tax consolidated profit of UniCredit Bank Czech Republic and Slovakia increased from CZK 2,464 million (as of 30 June 2014) to CZK 3,095 million (as of 30 June 2015). Mr Jiří Kunert, CEO and Chairman of the Board of Directors of UniCredit Bank Czech Republic and Slovakia, commented on the results: "We have been introducing innovations, new products, and responding flexibly to clients' requirements thanks to the strong background of our financial group, which allows us to provide clients with solutions across the range of segments. This direction is the right way of how to succeed and grow further, which is proved by our excellent business results. Two-digit growth was reported by consumer and mortgage loans, and a strong yoy increase is maintained by lending to small and medium-sized enterprises, including a dynamic growth of the financed value of vehicles and machinery of leasing companies within our group."

Items of Profit and Loss Statement
Net interest income of UniCredit Bank Czech Republic and Slovakia increased to CZK 5,200 million (as of 30 June 2014: CZK 4,905 million). Net income from fees and commissions grew to CZK 1,956 million yoy (as of 30 June 2014: CZK 1,751 million). 

The level of general administrative expenses increased by 5.2% to CZK 3,646 million (as of 30 June 2014: CZK 3,466 million). The credit risk cost dropped to CZK 762 million yoy (as of 30 June 2014: CZK 1,224 million). 

"I am really proud of that we were able again to repeat an increase in the net interest income which is remarkable in the continuous low interest rate environment. The increase reflects the growth of our client base and the increased volume of transactions in both markets where we operate. We continue to deliver excellent results also in trading thanks to the good positioning on the development of interest rates, credit spreads and FX as well as continuous hedging activities for customers. In line with the growing business we also see a slight increase in the operational cost base of our banking group. The constant approach in management of the credit risk cost and increased quality of long-term receivables have been positively reflected in the more than 60 per cent drop of the credit risk cost," said Mr Gregor Hofstaetter-Pobst, CFO of UniCredit Bank. 

Balance Sheet
In retail banking, mortgage loans supported by record-low interest rates grew by 17.3% and consumer loans by 10.5% yoy. The number of clients using the fee-free U konto (U Account) with free-of-charge ATM withdrawals within the country or abroad surpassed the record-high 190,000. 

The corporate segment reported a strong yoy increase in customer deposits, namely by 22.5%. The dynamic growth of granted loans was reflected in the segment of small and medium-sized enterprises, namely by 19% yoy. Two-digit growth was also reported by lending to large corporates. 

In leasing companies, the financed value for the first half of 2015 grew by 47.9% compared to the same period in 2014. The strongest yoy percentage growth was reported by machinery and equipment (80%), vehicles over 3.5 tonnes (54%) and vehicles up to 3.5 tonnes (31.8%). 

As of 30 June 2015, total assets of UniCredit Bank Czech Republic and Slovakia amounted to CZK 561,766 million, representing a 15% increase compared to the figures as of 30 June 2014 (CZK 488,662 million).
On the assets side of the Balance Sheet, receivables from clients increased by 8.3% to a total of CZK 355,880 million compared to the state as of 30 June 2014 (CZK 328,564 million). 
On the liabilities side, liabilities towards clients grew by 14.5% to CZK 333,008 million (30 June 2014: CZK 290,783 million). Liabilities from debt securities rose by 52.5% to CZK 67,811 million (30 June 2014: CZK 44,458 million). 
Bank equity grew by 4.9% to CZK 57,777 million compared to the first half of 2014 (as of 30 June 2014: CZK 55,063 million). 

Note for editors:
The consolidated net profit of the UniCredit Bank Czech Republic and Slovakia, a.s. financial group includes the results of UniCredit Bank and UniCredit Leasing in the Czech Republic and Slovakia, including the results of UniCredit Factoring Czech Republic and Slovakia.

21.7.2015 - With Chytré léto at UniCredit Bank, clients will save money and they may go on their next holiday in a new car

Prague, 21.7.2015

UniCredit Bank prepared a fresh summer roadshow Chytré léto (Smart summer) for the Czech and Slovak market. This roadshow will promote smart solutions and potential savings with U konto, Presto and mortgage loans. The roadshow will take place directly in Czech and Slovak streets, counting the savings of the people and presenting particular benefits of the UniCredit Bank products. If, moreover, people open the favourable U konto (U Account), take a mortgage or the consumer Presto půjčka (Presto Loan) during the summer vacation, they may win one of the three new Škoda Rapid vehicles. The Chytré léto roadshow will visit for a half day or a full day nearly 30 Czech and Slovak towns gradually where UniCredit Bank and UniCredit Bank Expres branches are present, by the end of the summer vacation.

"UniCredit Bank offers its clients unique conditions for the most popular products, current accounts, consumer or mortgage loans. We have decided to inform people of the smart solutions and favourable potential savings with our products directly in the streets across the Czech Republic and Slovakia. Moreover, three our clients who take one of these favourable products from our bank during the summer may go on their next holiday in their own new Škoda vehicle," says Giovanni Guidi, Director of Retail Banking at UniCredit Bank.

Within the roadshow, Czechs and Slovaks can meet teams of UniCredit Bank, which will calculate their potential financial savings with the favourable products of the bank directly on the spot. With U konto (U Account), they will save not only on the account monthly fees*, they will have cash withdrawals from any ATM in the world entirely free of charge too. Moreover, the bank guarantees the U konto (U Account) conditions for the next 10 years. When transferring their consumer loan to UniCredit Bank, clients may obtain a favourable interest rate and a CZK 3,000 bonus. Clients can enjoy a low interest rate from 1.69% p.a. on mortgage loans.  

Participation in this summer competition for three new Škoda vehicles in both countries is simple. All you have to do is to open a U konto (U Account), take a Presto půjčka (Presto Loan) or mortgage loan by 28 August 2015 and answer a simple question. In order to win one of the three Škoda Rapid vehicles, they must count how many kilometres will Škoda Rapid, part of the Chytré léto (Smart summer) roadshow fleet, drive around the Czech Republic in total. Three entrants who will be closest to the real mileage will receive prizes in the form of the Škoda Rapid.

It may be of help to the competing clients that the Chytre léto (Smart summer) roadshow in the Czech Republic will come, from 27 July until 16 August, through Brno, České Budějovice, Hradec Kralové, Jihlava, Karlovy Vary, Liberec, Mladá Boleslav, Olomouc, Ostrava, Pardubice, Pilsen, Prague, Ústi nad Labem and Zlin. Besides large Czech and Slovak towns, the banking fleet will be also in the vicinity of other UniCredit Bank branches. You will be able to meet them at nearly 180 points of sale across the Czech Republic and Slovakia. The detailed route, time schedule and competition rules are published for clients on https://www.unicreditshop.cz.

The Chytré leto (Smart summer) roadshow will be supported by a campaign in regional media, radios, on the website and at the branches.    

* Obtaining the favourable conditions and a free-of-charge keeping of U konto (U Account) is subject to a simple condition of monthly credit turnover of CZK 12,000 on the account.

20.7.2015 - Czechs making contactless payments amounting CZK 700 on average. Contactless cards will also be issued by UniCredit Bank starting this summer

Prague, 20.7.2015

Czechs make contactless payments in the average amount of CZK 700 per a payment, paying a half, CZK 350 on average, for food. This is indicated by the data from the network of 12,000 contactless terminals of UniCredit Bank. Also its clients will have the opportunity to pay by card easier and faster, whether at home or on holiday. Since the middle of July, UniCredit Bank have introduced contactless payment cards. This technology will be implemented in all of the newly issued cards. Existing clients may ask to have their cards replaced free of charge. 

UniCredit Bank have started issuing contactless payment cards of MasterCard from the middle of July 2015, and Visa cards from August. Moreover, UniCredit Bank has one of the widest networks of contactless payment terminals, with merchants operating more than 12 thousand of such terminals. Czechs make contactless payments in relatively high amounts, around CZK 700 on average. This is primarily due to frequent payments at petrol stations, which usually amount to CZK 800. On the contrary, they pay only CZK 350 on average for food and less than two hundred Czech koruna in fast foods.

All of the new cards currently issued to UniCredit Bank clients will automatically have the contactless technology built in, and existing clients may ask to have their cards replaced free of charge. Besides containing a contactless chip, the cards will still have a magnetic strip. Hence, new cards may be used for payments with all merchants, for withdrawal of cash from ATMs and for payments on the Internet, as the clients used to do using their regular cards.

Contactless payments are a way to pay for everyday shopping easily and without waiting. All you have to do is to present the contactless card to the reader; no PIN is required for payments up to CZK 500 or similar amounts in other currencies. The entire payment will be made in a few seconds, as much as six times faster than a regular payment by card. Higher amounts can be paid using contactless cards, too; however, PIN code has to be entered in the card terminal in such a case.

Cards work only in an immediate distance (around up to 2 cm) from the terminal, which makes reading of the card by another device impossible. The amount of the purchase is always deducted only once, even if the client presents the card several times by mistake. For verification purposes, the first payment by card must always be made in a regular manner; in case of frequent transactions, PIN has to be entered for small purchases also. Therefore, contactless payments are very secure and transparent. Every payment is recorded in the Internet banking by default. In case of discrepancies, a complaint may be filed in relation thereto as in the case of a regular payment, even without a receipt.

5.6.2015 - Factoring company Transfinance renamed UniCredit Factoring

Prague, 5.6.2015

Following the acquisition of the factoring company Transfinance in January, UniCredit Bank has also renamed the company. Since the end of May, the company has been operating under the business name UniCredit Factoring Czech Republic and Slovakia. The renaming will give a boost to the UniCredit brand and the synergies within provision of services of the financial group UniCredit Bank Czech Republic and Slovakia.   

UniCredit Factoring is a leading provider of operating financing in the form of factoring of domestic and foreign accounts receivable. Its business includes financing, collection and securing of short-term accounts receivable of clients from multiple branches of the industrial sector. By the acquisition, UniCredit Bank aimed primarily at further expanding its range of corporate banking products and services by adding factoring, which is intended mainly for small and medium enterprises. Acquiring a factoring company, UniCredit Bank has reinforced its market position in the domestic banking market and extended the portfolio of its services.

28.5.2015 - UniCredit named Best Sub-Custodian Bank in Central and Eastern Europe

Vienna, 28.5.2015

In its World’s Best Sub-Custodian Banks 2015 survey, Global Finance magazine awarded UniCredit for its achievements in Central and Eastern Europe. The US-based financial magazine selected UniCredit as Best Sub-Custodian Bank in Central and Eastern Europe. Furthermore, UniCredit scores number one in Austria, Bulgaria, Czech Republic, Hungary, Poland, Serbia, Slovenia and Ukraine.

Angelo Rizzuti, Global Deputy Head of Global Transaction Banking (GTB), said: “We are proud of this internationally acclaimed award, which is both a well-deserved acknowledgement of the outstanding work of our team and proof of our reliability as a sub-custodian bank. With the international UniCredit network and an extensive range of services, we can offer companies unrivalled benefits across borders.” 

Paolo Spada, Head of CEE GTB, commented: “The recent success with Global Finance across so many CEE countries confirms impressively our capability to deliver services in a consistently high quality, meeting fast changing customer needs and market requirements.” 

Global Finance´s editorial board, making use of market research, input from expert sources and entry information from banks, selected the winners from the institutions that reliably provide the best services in local markets and regions to global custodians. Its criteria included customer relations, quality of service, competitive pricing, smooth handling of exception items, technology platforms, post-settlement operations, business continuity plans and knowledge of local regulations and practices. 

 

UniCredit

UniCredit is one of the leading European commercial banks with strong roots in 17 European countries. Our world-wide network in roughly 50 markets comprises around 8,600 outlets and more than 145,000 employees (as of 31 December 2014). 

The Group operates the largest international banking network in Central and Eastern Europe with almost 3,500 business outlets (including Poland and Turkey).   

UniCredit is currently represented in the following countries: Austria, Azerbaijan, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Bulgaria, Croatia, Czech Republic, Germany, Italy, Poland, Romania, Russia, Serbia, Slovakia, Slovenia, Turkey, Ukraine and Hungary. UniCredit operates in the Baltic states with a leasing company (as of 31 December 2014). 

UniCredit's Corporate & Investment Banking gives companies, from small and medium Corporates to multinationals and institutional clients, access to the largest network of banks in Central and Eastern Europe, as well as to branches in major financial centers worldwide. The successful collaboration between our network’s relationship managers and specialists in our product lines (Financing & Advisory, Markets, Leasing, Global Transaction Banking) enables UniCredit to respond promptly to our clients’ entrepreneurial requirements. Thus, UniCredit supports the growth and internationalization of the Group’s corporate and institutional clients, creating sustainable value for all stakeholders. 

Global Transaction Banking of UniCredit combines the local expertise of more than 2,000 professionals with the experience of a sophisticated global transaction bank, offering a diverse and proven set of core competencies in the fields of Cash Management and eBanking, Trade Finance, Supply Chain Management, Structured Trade and Export Finance and Global Securities Services. UniCredit Group is the largest transaction bank in the heart of Europe. Many international awards demonstrate this.

22.5.2015 - Smart Banking under your thumb: UniCredit Bank is launching fingerprint logon to mobile banking

Prague, 22.5.2015

UniCredit Bank has prepared breaking innovations of its mobile application for its clients. Owing to the use of state-of-the-art features of smartphones, clients will be able to log on to the Smart Banking and Smart Key mobile applications using their fingerprint. This logon method will be available for Apple and Samsung smartphones. For selected models of these brands, this new feature is available to UniCredit Bank clients since 18  May.

Instead of entering your PIN code, all you have to do is to use your finger and the uniqueness of your fingerprint provides you with a quick, innovative and easy access to mobile banking. This is what the digital future of clients' access to their finance may look like. At the same time, fingerprint logon is very safe.

In addition to breaking innovations for logging the mobile application of UniCredit Bank is available to clients in a completely new trendy coat (i.e. a flat design) used for advanced mobile applications nowdays.

 "We are the first in the Czech and Slovak market to offer an innovation in mobile banking which will definitely make our clients even more "cool".  The uniqueness of clients' fingerprints will allow them to access the Smart Banking and Smart Key applications and, at the same time, it will save their time during the logon process," says Carmelo Minardi, Head of Multi-Channel Banking, UniCredit Bank.

 In order to secure personal data protection, the mobile application will use fingerprint technologies available in new mobile devices. These technologies use fingerprints saved in the user's smartphone. The fingerprints are neither saved nor sent to the bank's server. This innovative, quick and unique access to mobile banking may be used by owners of iPhone 5S, 6 and 6 Plus with iOS 8.1.1 and higher. As for Androids, it is for selected models of Samsung. Support for fingerprint logon is also available for tablets. For other brands of smart mobile phones is fingerprint logon planned, depending on the technological availability of this feature in individual models and the credibility of their manufacturers.

18.5.2015 - Transferring their loans to UniCredit Bank, clients will make significant savings and obtain an extra bonus of CZK 3,000

Prague, 18.5.2015

UniCredit Bank radically cutting interest rates on loans, starting from 3.9% p. a.

 Nearly one half of Czechs and Slovaks who are repaying any kind of loan considers another provider where they could pay less. One third of them even has direct experience with doing so, as shown by the UniCredit Bank survey regarding savings and loans. Starting from mid-May, clients can save even more. In the case of consolidation of loans, the interest rates are one of the lowest, starting from 3.9% p. a. In the case of transfer of one loan, the interest rates can be even lower, starting from 2.9% p. a. Moreover, once the clients agree on a loan with UniCredit Bank, subject to the conditions, they obtain a CZK 3,000 bonus.

 "The appetite of Czechs and Slovaks to refinance their loans is increasing. According to our survey, every other person who has any kind of consumer loan considers doing so. As loan specialists, we are aware of the fact that clients also want to gain something more besides saving their money. Therefore, besides the radical cuts in the interest rates on consumer loans, which are one of the lowest in the market, we will give clients a bonus of CZK 3,000," explained Dalibor Mička, Household Financing Director at UniCredit Bank.

 As a part of transfer of client's original loans, UniCredit Bank will handle all paperwork relating to the transfer of loans instead of the client and pay potential charges for the early repayment of the existing loans. However, clients can benefit from the low interest rates on loans only by the end of July.

 When transferring their loans, clients can pay lower monthly instalments and save their money. Clients can also increase their original loans with additional funds and maintain the current amount of their monthly instalment. Handling of this matter is simple, all you have to do is visit our branch or online shop www.unicreditshop.cz.

13.5.2015 - UniCredit Bank Czech Republic and Slovakia reported a consolidated net profit of CZK 1.7 billion for the first three months of 2015

Prague, 13.5.2015

  • Consolidated net profit went up by 57.8% yoy compared to last year’s quarterly results of UniCredit Bank Czech Republic and Slovakia.
  • Operating income increased by 17.2 % yoy.
  • Loans to clients grew by 7.5% compared to 31 March 2014.
  • Customer deposits increased by 7.3% yoy.
  • Total assets grew by 7.5% yoy.
  • Consolidated Capital adequacy ratio is at 15.94% (non-audited figure)
  • In the Europe Banking Awards 2014, organized by the reputable magazine EMEA Finance, UniCredit Bank was awarded the title of best investment bank in the Czech Republic and in Slovakia.

 The after-tax consolidated profit of UniCredit Bank Czech Republic and Slovakia increased from CZK 1,063 million (as of 31 March 2014) to CZK 1,677 million (as of 31 March 2015). Mr Jiří Kunert, CEO and Chairman of the Board of Directors of UniCredit Bank Czech Republic and Slovakia, commented on the results: 

“The right strategic decisions to invest in our development in times of crisis are reflected in our excellent business result of the financial group UniCredit Bank Czech Republic and Slovakia. 

Strengthening economic growth, on the both markets where we operate, is reflected in the accelerated loan dynamics of our portfolio. In terms of retail loans, this trend is encouraged by strong consumer demand and attractive interest rates of our mortgage and consumer loans. Corporate loans and leasing services also continue to strengthen thanks to the higher willingness of companies to invest in their development. Since January of this year corporate lending is positively complemented by the provision of factoring services, which are further added value for our clients.” 

Items of Profit and Loss Statement

Net interest income of UniCredit Bank Czech Republic and Slovakia increased to CZK 2,565 million (as of 31 March 2014: CZK 2,395 million). Net income from fees and commissions grew to CZK 941 million (as of 31 March 2014: CZK 829 million). Trading results increased by 86 % to 733 million (as of 31 March 2014: CZK 395 million). 

The level of general administrative expenses increased by 4% to CZK 1,796 million (as of 31 March 2014: CZK 1,727 million). Credit risk costs dropped by CZK 346 million yoy (as of 31 March 2014: CZK 523 million).

We achieved in the first quarter an excellent result increasing 57.8% yoy. Our result is based on a strong development on the underlying business with both loans and deposits rising above the market but also positively influenced by an outstanding trading result where the Bank took an advantage from the quantitative easing in the Eurozone. Given an excellent write back situation the credit risk costs dropped sharply, our operating costs are henceforward under control, our business model proves to be successful. Given our strong capital  (Consolidated CAD ratio 15.94%) and liquidity position, we are well prepared for upcoming business opportunities, said,Mr Gregor Hofstaetter-Pobst, CFO of UniCredit Bank. 

Balance Sheet  

In retail banking, consumer financing further strengthened; mortgage loans grew by 14.7% yoy and consumer loans grew by 11.2% yoy. The number of clients using the fee-free U konto with a ten-year guarantee of conditions achieved the borderline of 165,000.

 The corporate segment reported a two-digit percentage yoy growth in lending granted to corporate clients, including small and medium-size companies. The private banking segment strengthened considerably in deposits – by 22.4% yoy.

In leasing companies the financed value of vehicles for the first quarter of 2015 grew by 31% compared to the same period in 2014. The largest year-on-year percentage growth (57%) was reported for the machinery and equipment segment.

As of 31 March 2014, the total assets of UniCredit Bank Czech Republic and Slovakia amounted to CZK 536,988 million, representing a 7.5% increase compared to the figure as of 31 March 2014 (CZK 499,312 million).   

On the assets side of the Balance Sheet, receivables from clients increased by 7.5% to a total of CZK 348,970 million compared to the volume as of 31 March 2014 (CZK 324,651 million). 

On the liabilities side, liabilities towards clients grew by 7.3% to CZK 328,120 million (31 March 2014: CZK 305,910 million). Liabilities from debt securities rose by 16% to CZK 50,198 million (31 March 2014: CZK 43,258 million). 

Compared to the 1st quarter of 2014, equity grew by 12.7% to CZK 60,671 million (as of 31 March 2014: CZK 53,827 million). 

Note for editors: 

The consolidated net profit of UniCredit Bank Czech Republic and Slovakia, a.s., financial group includes the results of UniCredit Bank and UniCredit Leasing in the Czech Republic and in Slovakia, including the results of the Transfinance factoring company in the Czech Republic.

29.4.2015 - UniCredit Bank supports Czech farmers; the Bank arranged a meeting with their peers from abroad for them

Prague, 29.4.2015

Last year, Czech agriculture representatives exported more than 250 thousand tonnes of fruits and vegetables, however, they have to face reduction in purchase prices due to the Russian sanctions. UniCredit Bank, which wants to further strengthen its position in agriculture sector financing in the Czech Republic, will assist farmers in searching new opportunities. In cooperation with the Italian-Czech Chamber of Commerce, UniCredit Bank arranged a workshop as an invitation to MACFRUT 2015, an Italian fruit and vegetable fair. The professional workshop, which was attended mostly by leading Czech importers and exporters of fruits and vegetables, was opened by Paolo Iannone, Vice-Chairman of UniCredit Bank Board of Directors, and Renzo Piraccini, President of MACFRUT Fair.  

The situation on the agricultural products market is complicated mainly because of the Russian sanctions, restricting access to the market, which, in the long term, is the major extra-European market with around 2% share in total exports. The estimated losses of the last year caused by the sanctions are expected to exceed 250 million Czech koruna. Czech producers export a negligible volume of fruits and vegetables to Russia (only 880 tonnes in the last year), however, the drop in demand exerts pressure on the purchase prices. Thus, under the new framework of the EU Common Agricultural Policy, fruits and vegetables are considered to represent the so-called sensitive commodities. 

Therefore, UniCredit Bank and UniCredit Leasing provide agricultural clients (not just the fruit and vegetable sector) with maximum support in search of new export opportunities. On 28 April 2015, in cooperation with the ItalianCzech Chamber of Commerce, the Bank arranged a presentation of MACFRUT 2015, an Italian fruit and vegetable fair, where Czech growers, distributors, traders of fruits and vegetables and related services met their Italian peers. 

“This is a unique opportunity to gain new business contacts with Italian companies. I hope to meet many of the Czech attendees also in September at the fair in Rimini, where they will have the opportunity to start their cooperation with global industry leaders,” said Renzo Piraccini, President of the MACFRUT Fair

UniCredit Bank is a partner for farmers not only in the Czech Republic, but mainly in Slovakia, where the Bank holds a strong market share. “Last year, provided agricultural sector financing totalled almost CZK 3 billion, which means a year-on-year increase by 800 million over 2013. In Slovakia, UniCredit Bank holds a 30% share in the agricultural loans market with the total volume of loans exceeding EUR 282 million, i.e. approximately CZK 7.7 billion. Our financial group also provides through UniCredit Leasing financing of branded agricultural machinery, with strong year-on-year growth rates in this segment,” said Mr Paolo Iannone, Vice-Chairman of the Board of Directors and COO of UniCredit Bank

The expert seminar with the participation of domestic growers, representatives of a leading financial institution, UniCredit Bank and Italian - Czech Chamber of Commerce is an exceptional opportunity linking all participants together who are contributing to the trade development. 

UniCredit Group is the chief sponsor and the business partner of Macfrut 2015, a fruit and vegetable fair to be held on 23 – 25 September in Rimini.

23.4.2015 - UniCredit voted Best Bank in Central and Eastern Europe by EMEA Finance

Prague, 23.4.2015

UniCredit Bank is the Best Investment Bank in the Czech Republic and Slovakia 

UniCredit Group won in a total of eleven categories of Europe Banking Awards 2014, organised by the renowned EMEA Finance magazine. The Group was voted the “Best Bank” in the Central and Eastern Europe and Commonwealth of Independent States region. Polish Bank Pekao, a member of UniCredit Group, was voted the “Most Innovative Bank in CEE & CIS”. UniCredit Bank in the Czech Republic and Slovakia won the “Best Investment Bank” award for cooperation with the European Investment Bank in the sale of covered bonds. The award ceremony will take place on May 13 in Tbilisi, Georgia.  

The awards are a recognition of UniCredit Group’s 2014 achievements in the entire region and in individual countries. Members of UniCredit Group in Bosnia and Herzegovina, Bulgaria, Italy and Croatia won the “Best Bank” awards, and those in Hungary, Serbia and Slovenia are considered the best foreign banks by the EMEA Finance magazine. 

"Our geographical distribution and business model is confirming to be resilient also in time where geopolitical tensions and unfavourable exchange rates are influencing our Central and Eastern Europe region. While competitors are scaling back their business, we are constantly refining our service models and investing consistently in new technologies. The acquisition of 900.000 new customers and the market shares increase in most CEE countries confirmed that we are on the right path”, stated Carlo Vivaldi, Head of CEE Division at UniCredit. 

Moreover, UniCredit Bank Czech Republic and Slovakia was also voted the “Best Investment Bank”. Cooperation between UniCredit Bank and the European Investment Bank (EIB) in the sale of a covered bond issue valued at MEUR 196.1 in December 2014 was the impetus for this award. The bond forms first part of UniCredit Bank EUR 5 billion international covered bond program. 

“I am more than pleased that this locally unique transaction has gained an international recognition and such a prestigious award. Funding via rated covered bonds as a loan substitute is an innovative funding solution whose sole aim is to be able to be more competitive in providing loans to our SME customers, which benefit from the attractive terms,” Jiří Kunert, Chairman of the board and CEO of the UniCredit Bank Czech Republic and Slovakia said. 

In March this year, UniCredit Bank Czech Republic and Slovakia sold EIB another two covered bond issues totalling EUR 365.8 million under this program and the transaction has been successfully completed. Together with other covered bond transactions  planned this year it is expected  that other investors will join. This is also the first time that the EIB has purchased a covered bonds in the Czech Republic. 

The objective for the European Investment Bank behind this transaction is twofold: (i) to increase its support to the Czech and Slovak SME sector – the EIB purchased the bond as loan substitute, which means that UniCredit Bank CZ&SK will use the proceeds of the sale to expand its medium/long-term funding to SMEs in the Czech Republic and Slovakia on attractive terms; and (ii) to support the emerging Czech covered bond market – the EIB sees high potential in this bond market, which in the current market and regulatory environment constitutes an attractive alternative for channelling EIB funding to investment projects. 

For editors:  

The European Investment Bank is the long-term lending institution of the European Union and is owned by the EU Member States. It makes long-term finance available for sound investment in order to contribute towards EU policy goals. 

UniCredit is a leading European commercial bank with strong roots in 17 countries. Our overall global network embraces approximately 50 markets with nearly 8,600 branches and more than 145,000 employees (as of 31 December 2014). 

In the CEE Region, UniCredit runs the largest and most diversified international banking network with approximately 3,500 branches (Poland and Turkey included).

The Group operates in Austria, Azerbaijan, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Bulgaria, Croatia, the Czech Republic, Germany, Hungary, Italy, Poland, Romania, Russia, Serbia, Slovakia, Slovenia, Turkey and Ukraine. In the Baltics, UniCredit is present through its Leasing subsidiary (as of 31 December 2014).

2.4.2015 - UniCredit Bank introduces a revolutionary novelty in fixed-rate mortgage loans – extraordinary repayments free of charge

Prague, 2.4.2015

UniCredit Bank brings a unique offer in mortgage loans. The bank will yearly provide the option of extraordinary repayments up to 20% of the principal, free of any charge, to clients entering into fixed-rate mortgage loan contracts after 1 April 2015. Thus, the clients will be provided with more flexibility when repaying their mortgage loans. This is another from the series of novelties in mortgage loans introduced recently by UniCredit Bank. Besides the seven-year interest-rate fixation, the Bank also offers the “all at the price of one” concept, when three-year and five-year fixation and variable rate all start at 1.69% p. a.

  “For some time past we have noticed that our clients are in demand of a more flexible and faster repayment of their mortgage loans, at same time while maintaining low instalments for the longest period of time. Therefore, we have prepared a unique offer for our clients to allow them a more flexible repayment tailored to their needs. Newly clients can take an advantage of extraordinary payments free of charge without any increase in their interest rate,” said Dalibor Mička, Household Financing Director at UniCredit Bank.

 UniCredit Bank has already introduced the FLEXI mortgage loan, allowing the clients to make extraordinary repayments of up to 100 % of the principal over the whole duration of the loan. FLEXI mortgage loans will be further available to UniCredit Bank’s clients without any changes.  

 UniCredit Bank is presently the fourth largest bank providing a broad scale of mortgage products through its experts over the whole network of UniCredit Bank and UniCredit Bank Expres branches and the partners’ distribution network.

13.3.2015 - UniCredit Bank has selected Partners to innovate the franchise concept

Prague, 13.3.2015

UniCredit Bank has agreed on its cooperation with Partners in the franchise concept. Partners will become the master franchisee for selected UniCredit Bank’s franchise points of sale. UniCredit Bank and Partners plan to come up with the extended offer of products and services in part of UniCredit Bank franchisee network up to 25 franchise points of sale.

In November 2010 UniCredit Bank was the first in the Czech financial sector to introduce the concept of franchise branches . Until recently, the bank established 51 own franchise points of sale all over the Czech Republic.. By the end of this year, besides services offered by UniCredit Bank, selected franchise points of sale will start providing their clients also with a comprehensive offer of advisory services of Partners. 

We are well satisfied with our Franchise concept and being the first in the financial sector on the Czech Market we are constantly looking for innovations and enhancement. One of the most important factors to be successful in franchise concept are the franchisees themselves and the quality of service provided to clients. That’s why the process to select the Franchisee is key as they should be successful entrepreneurs, as well as to have competences and knowledge in financial services and/or to be able to acquire/learn financial service knowledge. Therefore we have selected company Partners, with whom we have long term satisfactory partnership, which is skilled in implementing their own franchise concept in the financial sector, so we are joining forces and experience and came to an agreement,” said Paolo Iannone, the Vice-Chairman of the Board of Directors and COO of UniCredit Bank.    

“This is of importance for both involved parties, as the client is to be provided with access to banking services and a broad portfolio of financial products and independent planning at one place. Mainly franchisees take it as a very attractive opportunity to expand their business potential,” said Petr Borkovec, Chairman of the Board of Directors, Partners Financial Services.

UniCredit Bank’s title to the franchise points of sales will be retained and the services will be provided to clients in an unchanged scope under UniCredit Bank brand.

Always with the consent of the current franchisee a particular franchise outlet will be handed over to Partners. An existing franchise partner will have a possibility of either continuing within the set model or using an extended format, i.e. including products offered by Partners

In a selected part of the franchise commercial network, our clients will be provided with our services and besides that they will also have a chance to use services of Partners advisory firm, which will be offered in a clearly designated parts of the branches and value for our customers will be further added.

By the end of this year, UniCredit Bank and Partners plan to come up with the extended offer of products and services up to  25 franchise points of sale.

In the remaining part of UniCredit Bank’s franchise commercial network we do not plan changes either in provided services or franchisees.

17.2.2015 - New fast overdraft for small entrepreneurs and start-ups will be launched by UniCredit Bank

Prague, 17.2.2015

UniCredit Bank has a new offer of overdraft for small entrepreneurs and start-ups. Clients interested in taking out a bank overdraft of up to CZK 150 thousand will neither need any guarantee nor will they have to submit any tax return. The only condition for new and existing clients is an at least 3-month term of business and a sufficient volume of transactions on their business account.

The advantage of the new overdraft for start-ups is the fact that clients submit a minimum set of documents with the application for bank overdraft. Moreover, the entire processing of applications is streamlined, enabling the client to use the money from the overdraft sooner.

"We are actively looking for ways how to support entrepreneurs focusing on their real needs. We believe that thanks to the possibility to get fast bank overdraft up to CZK 150 thousand without any paperwork we will support our clients in achieving their business goals. Especially in case of start-up entrepreneurs we are glad that we can help them with successful start of their business." says Jiří Daneš, Manager of Small Business at UniCredit Bank.

The limit of all product variants is calculated based on a three-month average of credit transactions on the business account, ranging from CZK 50,000 up to CZK 150,000. Compared to offers on the market, this new product of UniCredit Bank provides benefits in terms of interest rates as well as in terms of the granted volume of the bank overdraft.

UniCredit Bank is a traditional partner of sole traders, liberal professions, and small and medium-sized enterprises.

13.2.2015 - UniCredit Bank Czech Republic and Slovakia reported preliminary consolidated net profit of CZK 4.9 billion for 2014, a year-on- year increase of 55%.

Prague, 13.2.2015

The preliminary consolidated business results of UniCredit Bank Czech Republic and Slovakia, a.s. for 2014¹: 

 Net profit of UniCredit Bank Czech Republic and Slovakia went up by 55% yoy compared to the aggregate results of UniCredit Bank Czech Republic and Slovakia for the same period of the previous year

  • Customer deposits increased by 7.3% yoy
  •  Loans to bank clients grew by 7.7% yoy
  • Loans to clients of leasing companies rose by 4.9% yoy
  • Total assets grew by 9.5% yoy
  • Capital adequacy is at 14.4% (non-audited figure)
  • Equity increased by 15.1% compared to the same period of the previous year
  • UniCredit Bank was awarded a prestigious award in the field of trade finance by the magazine Global Finance. In the Private Banking Survey 2014,  Euromoney magazine awarded UniCredit Bank for  the excellence of its private banking in the range  of investment products category. UniCredit Bank was also given the prestigious Top Employer 2014 certificate

 The after-tax preliminary consolidated profit of UniCredit Bank Czech Republic and Slovakia increased from CZK 3,170 million (as of 31 December 2013) to CZK 4,911 million (as of 31 December 2014). Mr. Jiří Kunert, CEO and Chairman of the Board of Directors of UniCredit Bank Czech Republic and Slovakia, commented on the results:

 "We have achieved the planned synergy effects of the merger of UniCredit Bank in the Czech Republic and in Slovakia, as well as within the acquisition of the UniCredit Leasing companies. We have strengthened our market position in both markets, introduced new innovations in the product portfolio and, at the same time, improved the quality of provided services. Moreover, business results rose as well, which was significantly reflected in the yoy increase of net profit."

 Items of Profit and Loss Statement

Net interest income of UniCredit Bank Czech Republic and Slovakia increased to CZK 10,049 million, representing an increase of 41.5% compared to the same period of the previous year (as of 31 December 2013: CZK 7,100 million). Net income from fees and commissions grew by 25.4% yoy to CZK 3,557 million (as of 31 December 2013: CZK 2,836 million).

 The level of general administrative expenses increased by 22.3% to CZK 7,170 million (as of 31 December 2013: CZK 5,865 million). The credit risk cost was CZK 2,236 million (as of 31 December 2013: CZK 2,129 million).

 "The 2014 preliminary consolidated results are indeed excellent; we grew revenues thanks to the constantly increasing customer base and business as well as optimizing our banking group’s funding costs. We keep having a cautious approach on our cost base and maintain a conservative risk approach which is both reflected positively in our numbers.The consolidated capital adequacy of UniCredit Bank is still high - exceeding 14% even despite the acquisition of the purely credit business of UniCredit Leasing," adds Mr. Gregor Hofstaetter-Pobst, CFO of UniCredit Bank.

 Balance Sheet

 In the lending segment, loans granted to clients went up mainly thanks to a 14% yoy increase in consumer and mortgage loans. Following the introduction of the revolutionary U Account, with a ten-year guarantee of conditions and free withdrawals from any ATM at home and abroad, the number of acquisitions of new clients in the retail segment has more than doubled. In the corporate segment, focus was still on structured financing, with UniCredit Bank participating in most of the major transactions in the Czech Republic and Slovakia in 2014. UniCredit Bank also reported significant growth in the financing of small and medium-sized enterprises, achieving  a 25% yoy growth in this segment. The leasing companies continued to strengthen our brand vehicle financing, credit financing in the area of corporate loans, and operating leasing for businesses and private individuals.

 As of 31 December 2014, assets of UniCredit Bank Czech Republic and Slovakia amounted to CZK 508,616 million, representing a 9.5% increase compared to the figure as of 31 December 2013 (CZK 464,622 million).  

 On the assets side of the Balance Sheet, receivables from bank clients increased by 7.7% to a total of CZK 312,133 million compared to the volume as of 31 December 2013 (CZK 289,945 million).

 On the liabilities side, liabilities towards clients grew by 7.3% to CZK 328,585 million (31 December 2013: CZK 306,298 million). Liabilities from debt securities rose by 9.9 % to CZK 47,285 million (31 December 2013: CZK 43,041 million).

 Equity grew by 15.1 % to CZK 58,410 million (as of 31 December 2013: CZK 50,747 million).

 

Note for editors:

¹ All figures in this Press Release are preliminary, consolidated, non-audited and compiled in accordance with IFRS EU. The 2014 preliminary consolidated net profit of UniCredit Bank Czech Republic and Slovakia, a.s. includes the results of UniCredit Bank in the Czech Republic and in Slovakia including the results of UniCredit Leasing CZ and UniCredit Leasing Slovakia and their subsidiaries. In the comparison, the 2013 figures include the aggregate results of UniCredit Bank in the Czech Republic and in Slovakia excluding UniCredit Leasing CZ and UniCredit Leasing Slovakia and their subsidiaries.

22.1.2015 - UniCredit Bank has acquired Transfinance

Prague, 22.1.2015

For some time now, low interest rates and favourable prices of properties have been the reality of the Czech mortgage market. Czechs want to secure the low mortgage instalments for the longest possible time, therefore they are increasingly choosing the longer fixation of interest rates. In reaction to this trend, since the beginning of January, UniCredit Bank offers its client a novelty in its portfolio, seven-year fixation of interest rate with favourable interest from 1.99 % p.a.

Last autumn, UniCredit Bank introduced a favourable mortgage concept “all in one” for the requested mortgages. The rates for 3 and 5-year fixed mortgages continue to drop and from January, clients may purchase them at the unmatched interest rate from 1.69 % p. a.

Currently, the 5-year fixed mortgages are the most popular types among our clients; they are requested by as many as three quarters of new prospects. We respond to the demand of our clients and we have decided to enable them to secure the current interesting mortgage payment for a period even longer than five years, and what is more, under very favourable conditions. Therefore, we included an innovation into our offer from January, in form of 7-year fixed interest rate for mortgage loans,” says Dalibor Mička, Household Financing Director at UniCredit Bank.

Seven-year fixed rates are available in the UniCredit Bank’s offer from this January. For mortgages up to 85 % of property collateral value, the Bank offers these mortgages with very favourable interest rate from 1.99 % p.a., the same as for two-year fixation. The offer of seven-year fixed rates applies for purchasing new housing as well as for refinancing of existing mortgage loans.

UniCredit Bank is currently the fourth largest bank in the country providing a wide range of mortgage loans via its experts in the entire branch network of UniCredit Bank and UniCredit Bank Expres, including the distribution network of its partners. Clients can also arrange refinancing of their mortgage through the up-to-date banking e-shop, directly from the comfort of their home.

22.1.2015 - Czechs are fixing low interest rates for mortgage loans, UniCredit introduces favourable seven-year fixation from 1.99 %

Prague, 22.1.2015

For some time now, low interest rates and favourable prices of properties have been the reality of the Czech mortgage market. Czechs want to secure the low mortgage instalments for the longest possible time, therefore they are increasingly choosing the longer fixation of interest rates. In reaction to this trend, since the beginning of January, UniCredit Bank offers its client a novelty in its portfolio, seven-year fixation of interest rate with favourable interest from 1.99 % p.a.

Last autumn, UniCredit Bank introduced a favourable mortgage concept “all in one” for the requested mortgages. The rates for 3 and 5-year fixed mortgages continue to drop and from January, clients may purchase them at the unmatched interest rate from 1.69 % p. a.

Currently, the 5-year fixed mortgages are the most popular types among our clients; they are requested by as many as three quarters of new prospects. We respond to the demand of our clients and we have decided to enable them to secure the current interesting mortgage payment for a period even longer than five years, and what is more, under very favourable conditions. Therefore, we included an innovation into our offer from January, in form of 7-year fixed interest rate for mortgage loans,” says Dalibor Mička, Household Financing Director at UniCredit Bank.

Seven-year fixed rates are available in the UniCredit Bank’s offer from this January. For mortgages up to 85 % of property collateral value, the Bank offers these mortgages with very favourable interest rate from 1.99 % p.a., the same as for two-year fixation. The offer of seven-year fixed rates applies for purchasing new housing as well as for refinancing of existing mortgage loans.

UniCredit Bank is currently the fourth largest bank in the country providing a wide range of mortgage loans via its experts in the entire branch network of UniCredit Bank and UniCredit Bank Expres, including the distribution network of its partners. Clients can also arrange refinancing of their mortgage through the up-to-date banking e-shop, directly from the comfort of their home.

21.1.2015 - CEE Banking Study 2015

Vídeň, 21.1.2015

Vienna, 21.1.2015

Cross-country differentiation to remain the key feature of CEE banking

  • Slight acceleration in loan growth likely to be visible in CESEE, mainly driven by corporate lending
  • External liabilities increasingly replaced by domestic funding, reducing past vulnerabilities
  • Overall, CEE banking sector RoA is expected to remain comparable to 2014 levels, at around 1.0%

 Although lending growth in CESEE has remained weak recently, a cross-country breakdown shows some more encouraging trends. A slight acceleration of lending growth is expected to proceed in CESEE - with corporate lending providing a boost by year end 2015 - while Russia will be affected by a significant deceleration. Some of the past vulnerabilities are being addressed as external liabilities have been replaced by domestic funding. With revenue-margins still under pressure, non-interest income is foreseen to be an important profitability driver.  The CEE banking sector RoA is expected to remain comparable to 2014 levels, at around 1.0%. Overall, the differentiation across Central Eastern European countries in terms of banking developments will remain a key feature. These are some of the key findings of the latest CEE Banking Study, which was conducted by UniCredit´s CEE Strategic Analysis department and which covers 13 different countries.

 Central and Eastern Europe remains a diverse region

“Central and Eastern Europe remains a diverse region. Thus the economy in Central and South-Eastern Europe is expected to grow this year by 2.5 percent, and by 2.9 percent in 2016, whereas the figures for the entire region will be 0.2 and 2.2 percent due to the contraction in Russia”, said Gianni Franco Papa, newly appointed Head of CIB Division and outgoing Head of CEE Division at UniCredit, “Reform-minded economies in particular should grow this year, while states with pending structural problems will be in recession.”

 Looking forward, a slight acceleration in lending growth in CESEE is likely to be visible this year, mainly driven by corporate lending. If Poland and the Czech Republic will continue to drive lending recovery in Central Europe, Slovenia and Croatia might come back to mild positive lending growth by the end of 2015. For CEE as a whole, lending growth will be affected by a significant deceleration in Russia.

 “In general corporate loans should increase by plus 12.4 percent in Central and Eastern Europe and by 3.5 percent in Central and South-Eastern Europe in 2015. The growth rates of retail loans should amount to plus 5.4 percent and 3.3 percent respectively”, stated Carmelina Carluzzo, Deputy Head of CEE Strategic Analysis at UniCredit. In CEE deposits will gain 9.1 percent this year and 4.2 percent in CESEE.

 New funding model, banking sector profitability stable

As external liabilities are increasingly replaced by domestic funding, mainly deposits and capital, local banking sectors in CESEE shift towards a more sustainable funding model. Thus the external-liabilities-to-total-assets ratio has continuously advanced and as of September 2014 stands at 13.5 percent. The loans-to-deposits ratio has improved from 98 percent to 96 percent from December 2013 to September 2014 indicating that local loans are more than fully covered by local deposits. This means that some of the past vulnerabilities have been addressed and the banking sector in the region is currently in a better shape to sustain future growth.

 With margins remaining under pressure, CEE banks will need to widen their range of opportunities to improve their revenue generation capacity. Similar to Western Europe non-interest income will play a more relevant role in the future. “Overall, we expect the CEE banking sector to keep its profitability in 2015 with a return-on-assets ratio comparable to 2014, at around 1.0%. Geopolitical developments as well as changes in the external environment represent a source of uncertainty for our outlook. Non-performing loans in the region are likely to remain a challenge”, reckoned Gianni Franco Papa.

“Lower oil price is a double-sided coin. Although it clearly weighs on the Russian economy, lower oil price may prove a boost to European households´ and companies´ spending power. Further upside risks to our 2015 forecasts include a more accommodative monetary policy of the ECB and local central banks as well as reinforced efforts towards a greater harmonization of financial services regulations”, added Carmelina Carluzzo.

CEE 2020: UniCredit to further strengthen its regional leadership position

Taking into consideration today´s demanding and rapidly changing economic environment, UniCredit has launched a special program, “CEE 2020” which aims at new ways to generate growth and value creation and to develop a future-proof customer business. Supporting the Group´s 2013 – 2018 Strategic Plan the objective is to yield appropriate structures and processes for a sustainably healthy development of the CEE Division. “With around one third, our subsidiary banks in Central and Eastern Europe contribute strongly to UniCredit´s profitability. We intend to further strengthen our leading position in the CEE region, keeping a vigorous focus on customer proximity and leveraging on our broad geographical footprint and comprehensive expertise. Over the past years we have gained market share in most markets thanks to our ongoing investments while competitors were deleveraging, and we intend to continue to do so in the future”, noted Gianni Franco Papa, Head of CIB Division and Head of CEE Division.

UniCredit currently has a Common Equity Tier 1 ratio of 10.73 per cent and an unrivalled international network in approximately 50 countries. The Comprehensive Assessment by the ECB proved UniCredit´s solid capital position, which resulted in a 2016 CET1 of 6.8 percent under the stress test adverse scenario.

The Group is the prime partner for supporting customers’ cross border business development and operations through its local banks in 14 countries with a seamless service model. It has unique in-depth knowledge of the various CEE markets and serves some 23,000 corporate customers operating in the region by its International Centers network. UniCredit people are dedicated to a strong quality service and committed to retain the Group’s leading position in CEE, including high customer satisfaction.

14.1.2015 - Euromoney Survey: UniCredit named Best Trade Finance Provider in Central and Eastern Europe

Prague, 14.1.2015

In the 2015 Euromoney Trade Finance Survey, UniCredit was given a prestigious award Best Trade Finance Provider in Central and Eastern Europe and Best Trade Finance Provider in the Czech Republic and Slovakia, as well as in another eight CEE countries. The survey also rated UniCredit as the leading trade finance provider in the product categories for guarantees and open account payments.

"We are very proud to be rated best trade finance provider in Central and Eastern Europe and in ten of our core markets in the region. UniCredit is the ideal partner for international corporates in CEE, where we have an extensive network, as we provide a full range of traditional trade finance products, such as letters of credit and guarantees, as well as sophisticated supply chain finance offerings which can be customised to the requirements of each customer. Trade finance is important for our international clients with operations in CEE as well as for domestic clients," said Gianfranco Bisagni, Head of CEE Corporate & Investment Banking.

 "Entrepreneurs and companies have always been considered the core segment by UniCredit Bank, where we offer clients non-standard services as well as high level of knowledge of the Czech and Slovak business environment. Moreover, owing to the Group's strength, we are able to support further expansion of domestic clients and help them to exploit business opportunities in the CEE and at a global level," added Tomáš Hron, Head of Global Transaction Banking UniCredit Bank Czech Republic and Slovakia.

The regular Euromoney survey is based on feedback from over 2,000 international corporates. It allows clients to nominate their top three trade finance providers by region. The survey is also used to produce country rankings, and by product area. In the current 2015 survey, UniCredit was given a prestigious award Best Trade Finance Provider in ten CEE countries; besides the Czech Republic and Slovakia also in Bosnia & Herzegovina, Bulgaria, Croatia, Poland, Romania, Russia, Serbia, and Turkey.

8.1.2015 - Dušan Hladný is the new Head of Private Banking at UniCredit Bank

Prague, 8.1.2015

From January 2015, Dušan Hladný (50) is the new Head of Private Banking at UniCredit Bank for the Czech Republic and Slovakia.

Since 1996, Dušan Hladný has been working at several managerial positions at UniCredit Group and in banks which have gradually become a part of the Group, bringing 25 years of experience in financial sector in the private segment. He replaced Raymond Kopka, who refocused on the development of retail banking in Slovakia within UniCredit Bank.

In UniCredit Bank, Dušan Hladný was previously responsible for managing corporate clients for SME. He started his professional career in Munich, Germany, where he acquired the necessary skills in corporate banking. Since 1994, he has been working in the banking sector in the Czech Republic. Within his professional career, he focused mainly on management of large corporates as well as SME clients. 

He graduated from University of Economics in Prague. He is fluent in German and English. He spends his free time travelling and, in particular, travelling to play golf.

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