From universal to wholesale banking operation RABOBAND N People 2 International Vision ISSUE 32/15 AUGUST 1994 Rabobank Germany made headlines in both the Dutch and German press last month when the dosure of three offices was announced. The reason behind the dosures is the bank's goal of transforming its present universal operation into a streamlined, centralized and effective wholesale bank. Over the next six months a major restructuring will hone Rabobank Germany into a rationalized, focussed organization. Raboband International reports on how the restructuring was developed and the future vision that lies behind it. Argentina Martin Kember joins the Buenos Aires office as credit analyst. He comes to the bank ff om a major national oil company where he worked in the finance department. Brazil Carlos Eduardo Pereira takes on the business support position in the Sao Paulo commercial department. He replaces Ursula Starke. Ricardo FleuryLacerda goes on a sab- batical to New York on August 12 to gain his graduate degree in business administration. Alexandre Guiao joins the bank as junior ac count officer. Rotterdam's Jan van den Ende is Brazil bound. After an orientation period in the operations department, he will join the commercial department to reinforce links with the bank's European branches. London Ton Röttjers has been appointed man ager of the credit division's legal services sec- tion. He joined the bank on 11 July. Corpor- ate banking manager and Raboband Inter national correspondent Deborah Cohen left the bank on July 8 as did systems developer Vijay Gajparia, deputy manager banking syn- dications Ann Kinrade and secretary Carole Cooper. Utrecht The foreign offices department has two new secretaries Annemiek Keijzer (left) spent three months backbacking through South America before joining the bank. Ma- rina Spelt-Demper was with the corporate banking division before moving to interna tional. International Editorial staff Stan Polman and Anne Lavelle (Editorial Department). Cees van Rest and Brigitte van Kanten (International Division). Editorial address Rabobank Nederland, Caroline Renette, editorial assistant, UC-R 514 P.O. Box 17100, NL 3500 HG Utrecht, Telephone +31 30 902083, Telefax +31 30 901904. Designed and printed by Hoonte-Holland, Utrecht. >- Frankfurt, July 1994. A brief press release announced the closure of three of Rabobank Germany's seven offices and the down-sizing of its Berlin operation to rep office status. The decision was reached following an intense period of self-examination involving the whole bank in Germany. Reorganization into the type of operation envisaged will be far- reaching. The three remaining offices, in Frankfurt, Dusseldorf and Hamburg, will each concentrate on developing specific areas of know-how, while Munich, Stuttgart and Han- over are to go, with the loss of 43 jobs out of a current 241and more may be announced as the ultimate new structure of the Frankfurt operation is finalized. Specialization Each of the three remaining units has been as- signed its own fields of operation and specialist staffin those fields will be located there. Frank furt will concentrate on corporate banking food and non-food, corporate finance, M8tA, treas- ury, private banking and operations, while Dusseldorf will service Dutch and worldwide customers operating in German markets and look after cash management worldwide. Final- ly, following Rabobank's international port policy, Hamburg will focus exclusively on food and agribusiness trade finance. But before looking ahead to how the new structure will work, we should first go back in time to under- stand the process that led to its design, for as GM Albert Sonntag says: 'the future needs a past'. Frankfurt, July 1993. The personnel's res taurant was the venue for a meeting of the whole staff of Rabobank Germany's Frankfurt office. They had come together to discuss ideas and concepts for improving the German operation's efficiency and effectiveness, and no one pulled any punches. Asked how they feit the bank as a whole functioned on a scale of one to 100, the unanimous rating was around 50. This self- searching and critical meeting would prove the beginning of a radical reorganization process that is still ongoing today. Acquisition Unlike other foreign offices, which start small and grow as business expands, the German bank began big. In 1984, Rabobank acquired an 84-percent holding in ADCA Bank, which private-banking chief Helmut Vortanz charac- terizes as 'a mini universal operation, with every kind of product, including retail'. At the time, the international division was in its infancy and a local bank with a small network of offices ap- peared the ideal way of gaining a foothold in Germany. New structure Rabobank Germany Dusseldorf >- Dutch/German trade >- Cash management l Hamburg Trade finance food and agri and non-food. Unfocussed However, over time it appeared that ADCA bank was unfocussed. As a relatively small bank in an overbanked country, its extensive range of products made it difficult to have a real impact on the market. 'This realization led to reorganiz ation after reorganization,' says Jaap Klep, Dus seldorf s manager and, with Sonntag and Anton Nillesen, one of Rabobank Germany's three- man management team (Vorstand). 'But, put bluntly, none of them actually went far enough. We still didn't have the structure necessary to operate effectively as a wholesale bank. So it was essential that we define our vision of the future, our strategie goals to support that vision, and re- alistic actions to achieve those goals. Only then could we put the right structure in place.' The July 1993 meeting was the first step towards the ultimate definition of that vision which, in effect, is a statement of intent: We, Rabobank Germany, will proactively create and realizepro- fitable solutions inpartnership with customers and personnel. 'I believe that a vision is something we all have to share,' says Sonntag, 'so I didn't want it to be imposed from the top down. I wanted participation from as many of our people as pos- sible, so we set up 13 projects involving around 70 staff members whose job was to explore ways of improving quality, results and processes.' Strategie goals The projects were based on the strategie goals al- ready defined, and which include increasing net profits to 7 percent after expenses and taxes by Frankfurt Corporate finance* >- Corporate banking* >- ffl/A Private banking >- Treasury Operations >- CuSTOMER SERVICES

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