Increasing importance of the Rabobank Group's foreign business caoo band 'The bank's foreign business is not the preserve of the International Division alone', says Henk Visser, 'All sections of Rabobank Neder land are involved in it'. These statements are made by the General anager of the International Division. A bank man, or better still: a Rabobank man, to the core. He knows the organization inside out. Interview with Henk Visser Issue 1/April 7, 1988 Henk Visser. A Rabobank man to the core. r Visser joined the Economie Re search Department of the Rabobank Group in 1971, after graduating in economics from the Vrije Universiteit in Am sterdam. At first, he occupied himself with Netherlands Bank regulations on banking supervision. Even then, he was in frequent touch with Rabobank Nederland's banking business. He was appointed head of the Economie Research Department. Next, he engaged in banking business, starting with a one-year traineeship at two London-based banks. Then he and two others became Rabobank Nederland's first account man agers, followed subsequently by his appoint- ment as head Agribusiness within the Cor- porate Banking Division. In 1984 he was appointed general manager of the Interna- nal Division. 'Dutch agricultural cooperatives have traditionally been strongly oriented to foreign markets', says Visser. Rabobank Ne derland customers consequently feit the need, in the years following World War II, to make their financial transactions through their own bank. After Raiffeisenbank and Boerenleenbank had merged to form Rabo bank, it was decided to perform ail foreign payment services under the bank's own management. Services introduced iater re- lated to foreign exchange dealings and arbi trage, interbank deposits and international lending. In the early eighties, the bank's in ternational services were further expanded by establishing subsidiaries and offices abroad. lts transactions with and in foreign countries have grown apace in recent years. Henk Visser is in charge of the rapidly deveioping business known as International Division. When not abroad, he commmutes by car from his residence in Bosch en Duin to his Utrecht office in twenty minutes. That is typical of the Netherlands. Besides his work for Rabobank he finds time for his hob- bies. He is a great lover of horses, plays tennis and practises speedskating. As we were toid earlier in the interview, aim at the faultless handling of foreign pay- ments. We consider that a chailenge. We are deveioping into a bank of international repute as an agribank, also for the benefit of Dutch businesses. Our choice of foreign locations is governed mainly by the inter- ests of our Dutch customers. The ultimate goal is for our foreign operations to con- Henk Visser. General Manager International Division. the bank's foreign business is not the con cern of the International Division alone. The operational side of payment transactions is handled by the Payments Division. They are also responsible for directing domestic pay ments into the right channels. Other divi- sions co-operating in this area are Opera tions and the Treasury Division. The activi- ties of the International Division itself re- late, among other things, to marketing and product development. 'We keep in touch with market deveiopments and plan our ac- tions accordingly. An example of this is the France-oriented export account. Other divi sion activities are, for instance, account management and business transactions initiated by the country desks. The foreign- based offices, including ADCA-BANK and the Curaqao office, also belong to the prov- ince of our division.' Mr Visser is quite explicit about the objectives set for the bank's foreign opera tions. 'It was all laid down in the annual re port for 1986. This stili hoids, in fact. We tribute to the Group result. Basically, they are to be regarded as services provided for the member banks.' A special part is played by the member banks in the Netherlands. Says Visser: 'With the support of Rabobank Nederland the local banks are able to enhance their foreign service capability on behalf of cus tomers doing business abroad. Special teams have been created to coach them intensively for that purpose.' Winding up the interview we look into the future. What deveiopments are in prospect? 'The poiicy plan serves as point of departure in this respect. It includes some new elements such as a widening of the range of ser vices, resulting in further expansion abroad. A Swiss-based office is currently being contemplated to meet the need for funds. Another focal point, of course, is agricul tural exports. Southern Europe represents increasing significance in that respect and we still have no footholds there. We are concentrating on that'. SP

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blad 'Raboband International' (EN) | 1988 | | pagina 4