NAB Bank SNORAS has been operating in the Lithuanian market for 17 years and currently provides its services to over a million clients. Even under the present market conditions, the bank earned over 20.2m litas (almost €6m) profit in the first quarter of this year. Bank SNORAS constantly works profitably because it understands the market well, values its customers, continually improves its services and creates new products.
Scandinavian banks’ capital dominates the Lithuanian financial market. Bank SNORAS is the largest non-Scandinavian capital financial institution, which has no foreign parent bank. The crisis affects all banks, irrespective of whether a bank has a parent or not – banks have to seek effective solutions on how to develop during a difficult economic period.
A great advantage of Bank SNORAS is that we can make decisions of a strategic importance immediately, i.e. in the central office situated in Vilnius, which allows the bank to react promptly and effectively both to the situation and the clients’ needs. Since the establishment of the bank, we have complied with the activity principles which have provided the bank advantages during the present time. We base the business on a mutual trust between the bank, clients and the partners. The bank has gained strength in the current conditions because it was hardened by the Russian crisis, which took place 10 years ago and made a great impact on the Lithuanian economy.
Bank SNORAS has been profitable since its establishment – it is conditioned by timely and thought-out decision making, clients’ trust and the ability to hear their needs. Last year was not an exception either, and the bank finished profitably. During the first quarter of this year, the bank earned over 20m litas (almost €6m) profit or by one-fifth more than in the same period in 2008.
Enhancing efficiency and optimisation
Taking into consideration the current market conditions, Bank SNORAS – one of the largest banks in the country – adopted an important decision this year: it commenced a cost reduction programme, concentrating on the current long-term bank clients and it began to closely assess new customers. Following the opinion that an economic crisis is also a season of opportunities, the bank endeavours to use this period for further business development.
A lot of attention is devoted to optimising the bank’s activity – presently we are implementing the informational banking system FlexCube, which manages business processes and is internationally recognised; it is used in more than 350 financial institutions in 120 countries. As Bank SNORAS group continues its expansion into the Baltic market and beyond, it is paramount that the processes in all group companies providing the banking services will be regulated by one system. Furthermore, this technological innovation will permit to adapt the bank’s activity according to the standards of the modern banking. We do not stop at these investments. Bank SNORAS will invest over 7m litas (€2m) in modernising the bank’s ATM network over the first half of this year in order to meet with the requirements posed in the Single Euro Payment Area (SEPA).
The bank’s high levels of competitiveness is achieved by a strong team of managers and specialists. The management board has also accumulated multi year experience, and one-third of Bank SNORAS employees have been working here for over 10 years. All this allows us to know our market, clients, their needs and expectations very well.
Expansion towards investment banking
During its 17 years, Bank SNORAS has earned a solid name as the leader in Lithuanian retail banking, and within the past few years it became a fully-fledged participant in the business banking market. Looking around for expansion prospects, Bank SNORAS became interested in strengthening its positions in the investment management and private banking spheres. For this purpose, at the beginning of this year, the board of Bank SNORAS adopted a decision to acquire 100% of the shares of bank “Finasta” – the leading investment bank in Lithuania. “Finasta”, apart from Latvijas Krajbanka (the oldest successfully operating bank purchased in 2005 in the neighbouring Latvia) will become the second subsidiary bank of Bank SNORAS.
This step has been made by looking at three-to-five year outlook – the economic recession will inevitably be replaced by an upturn, thus investment banking will revive in the long-term. Purchasing Bank “Finasta” will reinforce our position; until now it was managed by the group which started its activity in the financial sector 15 years ago. The specialists working in bank “Finasta” will add an excellent team of investment experts to the bank’s group.
Bank SNORAS group will also acquire 100% of shares of a brokerage and two asset management companies, leading the value of the investment funds managed by Bank SNORAS group to increase by 14 times exceeding 150m litas (€43.5m). The bank’s group will offer customers 16 investment funds and eight pension funds.
The bank will gain a solid position in both investment and retail banking. Although a lot of companies operate on the market, Bank SNORAS group will own over one-fifth of the Lithuanian investment funds market, 5% of the second-tier pension funds market and one-tenth of the third-tier pension funds market.