A New Glitnir Assumes Operations


Birna Einarsdóttir appointed CEO

  • The new bank will take over Glitnir‘s domestic assets to ensure normal banking activities and secure domestic deposits
  • A total of a 95 employees in Iceland will be made redundant
  • Glitnir‘s international operations will be separated from the new bank's operations
  • All branches, service centres, ATMs and Glitnir's online banking will remain open

A new bank in the ownership of the Icelandic government will today begin operations. The bank will take over parts of the operations of Glitnir Banki hf. The CEO of the new bank will be Birna Einarsdóttir which started with Glitnir Banki hf. predecessor in 1987, years, most recently as the Executive Vice President of Commercial Banking. The new bank's management board is made up of highly competent individuals that all have vast experience in their field both from inside and outside the bank.

On 14 October the Board of Directors of the Icelandic Financial Supervisory Authority (IFSA) decided that the New Glitnir would take over parts of the assets, rights and liabilities of Glitnir Banki hf. By that decision Glitnir Banki's domestic business operations will belong to the New Glitnir and adhere to the controls of its Board of Directors. This includes all domestic branches, lending and other conventional banking operations. By this act Glitnir Banki's international platform has been separated from the domestic.

Changes for employees

The estimated total number of employees of the new Glitnir is 960 which all will come from among Glitnir Banki's hf. current employees. These changes entail that a total of a 95 employees in Iceland will not be offered a position with the new bank and thus made redundant. Glitnir Banki hf. has this year worked hard at cutting costs and increasing efficiency among other by reducing staff. So far this year Glitnir Banki hf. has reduced staff by 250 excluding the 122 people now being made redundant.

The restructuring of the bank's operations has been done in close cooperation with the Confederation of Icelandic Bank and Finance employees and Glitnir's Staff Association.

The new management board

The new Glitnir's management board is made up of the following: Una Steinsdóttir - Commercial Banking, Stefán Sigurðsson - Asset Management, Vilhelm Már Þorsteinsson - Corporate Banking, Jóhannes Baldursson - Treasury and Capital Markets, Sigrún Ragna Ólafsdóttir - Finance and Operations and Rósant Már Torfason - Risk Management, Credit Control and Legal. All these individuals have vast experience in their field from both inside and outside Glitnir.

Business and operations will resume as normal

No changes will be felt in the bank's conventional business and interaction with its clients. The bank's branches will operate in an unchanged manner with no changes in opening hours. All services offered to individual and corporate clients will be the same and the use of credit cards will be unchanged. The new bank will take over all domestic savings and checking accounts and lending. Glitnir's online banking and ATMs will further operate in an unchanged manner. The act entails, that all domestic deposit obligations will be taken over by the new bank as well as the majority of Glitnir Banki's hf. domestic loan portfolio.

The new CEO

Birna Einarsdóttir first joined Glitnir (then Idnadarbankinn) in 1987. After six years with Royal Bank of Scotland she rejoined Islandsbanki (another Glitnir predecessor) in the fall of 2004 then as the Managing Director of Sales and Marketing. She was appointed to the role of Executive Vice President of Commercial Banking in June of 2007. Einarsdottir's work experience further includes work as the Marketing Manager for the Icelandic Broadcasting Company (Channel 2) and Íslensk getspá. Einarsdottir holds a B.Sc. in Business Administration from the University of Iceland and an MBA from the University of Edinburgh.

Birna Einarsdóttir:

"The past weeks have been very difficult for all those working in the financial sector. In the coming days New Glitnir's task will be to attend to the needs of our clients and staff. It is our duty to rebuild a strong banking sector in Iceland. Glitnir's employees have had to deal with difficult tasks in an extremely challenging market and have solved them well. This reflects the remarkable power in our people.

Ahead are times of change and reconstruction in Icelandic business community. We all need to join hands to ensure that our people and businesses can get through this period and prosper. We at Glitnir will certainly shoulder our share of that responsibility in cooperation with authorities and external stakeholders. Now, more than ever, it is vital for us to show solidarity; that is how we will get through this.

I worked closely with Lárus Welding and want to take the opportunity to thank him for his good work for Glitnir. When he joined the bank in the middle of last year it was clear that many demanding tasks lay ahead. His approach to and solution of these tasks was exemplary. I want to thank him for our good cooperation and wish him all the best in his future endeavours.

I look forward to taking on the challenges ahead and I firmly believe that by joining forces we will turn these challenges into opportunities for each and all of us."

For further information:

Már Másson, Head of Corporate Communication Glitnir Tel: 440 4990, Mobile: 844 4990, E-mail: mar.masson@glitnir.is

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