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Michael Burch (ING) : securing the future : a bank's commitment to long-term growth​

TWO YEARS AFTER HIS ARRIVAL IN LUXEMBOURG, MICHAEL BURCH, CEO OF ING IN LUXEMBOURG, EMBARKS ON AN AMBITIOUS JOURNEY TO GROW PERSONAL & PRIVATE BANKING AND WHOLESALE BANKING

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How is ING evolving in the Grand Duchy?

It no secret that we intend to shift our focus where we feel ING can make a real difference in Luxembourg. As bank, our goal is to achieve a sustainable return while offering our clients superior value and experience. Retail banking is such a competitive market, ongoing investments are necessary. A specific size is required to justify these investments, and it is challenging to reach in a small market like Luxembourg. But I think that change always brings many opportunities with it. This is why we intend to focus our retail banking activities in Luxembourg on clients with long-term investment needs to become an established player in personal and private banking. With our dedicated offer for the investment fund industry, institutional clients, and corporate clients, we aim to stay a leading partner in Wholesale Banking.

 

"THE CURRENT ENVIRONMENT OFFERS MANY POSSIBILITIES FOR A GROUP LIKE OURS, WITH ITS HIGHLY ENTREPRENEURIAL CULTURE."

What is your strategy for the coming months?

Over the coming months, one of our priorities will be to support and help our mass retail clients to move their banking relationship to other banks and ensure that they have enough time to transfer their assets without any disruption of essential banking services. We are firmly committed to stay a leading partner in Wholesale Banking and we will continue to serve institutional clients and large corporate clients. We will keep growing our in-house custodian and depositary activities to build and develop a key hub for our fund management business in Europe. As we intend to become an established player in Luxembourg in Personal and Private Banking, we will be working on a new value proposition to offer our clients a superior value and differentiating client experience. Our vast experience in investment products, wealth management and international Private Banking will enable us to become this strong and sustainable financial partner.

What opportunities and risks do you see for Luxembourg in general and ING in particular?

The geopolitical and economic context, exacerbated by successive waves of regulation, inflation, recent cut of interest rates, wars in Ukraine and the Middle East, are various factors that drive Luxembourg and the financial place to show resilience. The current environment offers many opportunities for Luxembourg as well as for a group like ours, with its highly entrepreneurial culture. Luxembourg possesses knowledge across a variety of fields including investment funds, banking, capital markets, insurance, FinTech, and sustainable finance which has produced an ecosystem that is unique to Europe. Through strong collaboration with state actors, financial institutions, authorities, and service providers in Luxembourg, banks like ING can benefit from this vibrant ecosystem, have access to specialized knowledge, and deliver complete client services. A challenge specific to Luxembourg is its dependence on cross-border commuters and expatriates: How will we continue to attract talent given the rising cost of living and new preferences for remote working? I'm impressed by the level of expertise in our company, made up of many nationalities, both resident and non-resident: Their commitment and motivation are second to none. The past proves that Luxembourg has always been able to reinvent itself and take on new challenges. I am convinced that by working together, we can ensure that Luxembourg remains a leading international player.

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