CaixaBank, Catalan largest bank, obtained an attributable net profit of €230 million in 2012, 78.2% less than in 2011.
The bank said it has been focused on fully restructuring its business and purchasing other financial entities to enlarge its customer base and reach 13 million clients.
The new strategy has allowed CaixaBank to raise its core capital up to 11%, to increase its customer funds by 19.6%, up to €288.57 billion, and to make its loans portfolio grow by 20.1%, reaching €223.45 billion.
Isidre Fainé, President at Caixabank said yesterday in a press conference in Barcelona the current year will be better than the year left behind. Fainé is therefore optimistic about 2013, since the Catalan bank has already carried out 87% of the changes required by the Spanish Government in 2012 while restructuring the entire banking system.
In fact, in 2012, CaixaBank allocated €10.3 billion for provisioning charges and write-downs in order to strengthen its position and consolidate its solidity, which was emphasized by the independent audit to Spain’s entire banking system made by Oliver Wyman and Roland Berger half a year ago.
According to its managers, CaixaBank’s liquidity is excellent, with €53.09 billion that might be obtained almost immediately, which represents 15.2% of the bank’s total assets. In addition, in 2012 the Barcelona-based financial entity had an income of €6.74 billion and a net operating income of €3.17 billion.
Furthermore, CaixaBank will keep its €500 million budget for its social work foundation, the same amount as for the last six years. Additionally, in 2013, CaixaBank will allocate €6 million to create between 10,000 and 20,000 new jobs for young people in companies or new business projects.
Yesterday, Caixabank, Catalan largest financial entity, presented its results in Barcelona, where it is based. Fainé stated that 2012 ended in a reasonably positive way for CaixaBank, although it has been the worst year of the crisis.
According to him, 2012 will go on the history books for the worsening of the economy, mainly produced by the effect on economic activity of the doubts about the Euro’s subsistence.
However, these doubts have now been clarified with the consolidation of the monetary union project. For Fainé, 2012 will also go on the history books for the great efforts made, which will start to pay off in 2013.
Therefore, structural reforms, the extraordinary effort of the financial sector and the consolidation of the Euro are the positive factors of last year, according to him, which will help the economy to get on the right path.
In fact, Fainé even dared to state for the first time in many years that the year just started will very likely be better than the year left behind. The CaixaBank President stated that the economic recovery will have started by the end of 2013.
Both Fainé and Joan Maria Nin, CEO at Caixabank, emphasized the purchase of Banca Cívica and its digestion as one of the Catalan bank’s main milestones in 2012. This purchase has enabled CaixaBank to meet the objectives of its strategic plan set in 2007 two years before what was expected.
Nin stated that the full digestion will be in April 2013, after the technological platforms of Caja Canarias in March and Caja Burgos in April have been integrated. Furthermore, the Banc de València, CaixaBank’s most recent purchase, will be fully integrated in July 2013.
Therefore, Nin underlined that by the end of the first half of the year, the four purchases of the last two years will be fully integrated in a single platform: Caixa Girona, Bankpime, Banca Cívica and Banc de València.
Nin explained that the merger by takeover of Banca Cívica has enabled CaixaBank to grow by 20% on average. With Banca Cívica’s purchase, CaixaBank’s customer funds increased by 19.6%, reaching €288.568 billion and its loan portfolio grew by 20.1%, up to €223.449 billion.
Nin also explained that out of the €10.3 billion for provisioning charges and write-downs, €4.55 billion corresponds to valuation adjustments against equity relating to Banca Cívica’s portfolio of loans and property that has been handed over.
With these operations, CaixaBank now dominates 30% of the Catalan retail banking markets, 39% of Navarra’s, 28% of the Canary Islands’, 18% of Andalucía’s and 11.5% of Castilla y León’s.