Scotiabank celebrates 100 years in London

Thursday, August 06, 2020

Company: Scotiabank

One hundred years after opening its first retail branch on Old Broad Street in London, England with a staff of seven, Scotiabank has earned its place among London bankers. The ways the Bank serves its UK clients have evolved immensely, but one thing that hasn’t is an unwavering commitment to its clients’ needs. 

The Bank’s doors stayed open on Old Broad Street (pictured above) as bombs rained on London during the Second World War. Now, despite markets being rocked by COVID-19 and the lockdowns ordered to contain the pandemic, Scotiabank Europe continues to serve clients and reported a record quarter. 

“Through Scotiabank’s history, we have supported our clients through many different economic cycles. We have a strong capital position, with a diversified and durable funding mix, reinforced by a well-established regulatory framework,” says Jake Lawrence, Co-Group Head, Global Banking and Markets. 

“I’m proud of the way our entire team across Europe has adjusted the way we work and continued delivering for our clients. We are well positioned to navigate this crisis, and our solid foundation will continue to enable us to meet our clients’ needs.”

Operations in Europe, which include offices in both London and Dublin, now have a staff of 425 and represent the second-largest presence of the Canadian banks in the region. 

Amid the recent global challenges, business has been strong. Scotiabank Europe is becoming a go-to bank for supporting customers in facilitating trade and investment flows between Europe and the Americas, and in particular for the Pacific Alliance countries of Mexico, Peru, Chile and Colombia. 

“Our markets capability here in London is a key component of how we support both issuers and investors in Europe and across our core Americas footprint,” explains Peter Heidinger, Managing Director & Head, Europe.

London is one of the largest asset-management hubs for emerging markets investments — worth hundreds of billions of dollars — with a significant portion of assets and securities being issued by governments and corporations from the Pacific Alliance countries. In the 2019 fiscal year, Scotiabank Europe doubled the value of Latin American securities sold to European investors.  

Leveraging the strength of its global presence in support of its clients in the Pacific Alliance countries, Corporate and Investment Banking’s Americas-linked business activity climbed 35% year-over-year in the second quarter of 2020.  Scotiabank Europe also executed its first euro-denominated Latin American sovereign bond. 

Scotiabank’s capabilities in Latin America are also being noted by multinationals. One recent example is the series of cash management mandates for a major European reinsurer, for a portion of their Pacific Alliance based operations. 

Market making in London of Canadian provincial debt instruments went live in the second quarter of 2019, a move that has allowed the Bank to support core provincial and government linked issuers as they tap global pools of liquidity and seek to manage market risk amid highly volatile markets. 

“In the past 100 years, Scotiabank’s presence has grown from a single branch with seven employees to a team of 355 in London and 70 in Dublin, supporting our clients across Europe and the Americas,” says Heidinger. “We have a proud history of being there for our clients, our communities, and for one another – and will continue to be there, for every future.”

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