Commbank in big Brexit move

Giant Aussie bank to ditch London

Commbank in big Brexit move

Commonwealth Bank of Australia said Monday that it will move its European headquarters from London to Amsterdam within the next few months as a result of the UK’s exit from the European Union.

The new headquarters is expected to be operational in the first half of 2021, according to a Reuters report. As part of the move, CBA has launched a newly licenced Dutch subsidiary, Commonwealth Bank of Australia (Europe) N.V.

“Being awarded a new licence in Europe means we are better placed to help both our Australian and European clients access greater capital flow and investment, essential for the growth of our economy,” said Andrew Hinchliff, CBA group executive for institutional banking and markets. “The licence puts us a step closer to our goal of combining global connectivity and capability to help build a better Australia. Our new European head office will also enable us to share valuable international insights with our Australian clients.”

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CBA’s new office in Amsterdam will serve institutional clients based in Europe and act as a gateway to Australia and New Zealand for the bank’s wholesale European clients, whom the bank said were major contributors to Australia’s foreign direct investment, and who provide a large investor base for the domestic bond market.

“Amsterdam is the perfect choice for CBA to support its institutional clients based in Europe and offers a talented, multilingual workforce as well as a thriving fintech ecosystem,” Hinchliff said. “We’re currently working with our clients domiciled in Europe to make the transition as seamless and smooth as possible.”

The Dutch subsidiary will continue supporting CBA’s European clients “regardless of the outcome of Brexit,” and will supplement the existing services provided by its UK subsidiary, the bank said.

CBA will employ about 50 people in Amsterdam by June, Reuters reported. Its London office will remain open with a staff of about 200.

Since the UK voted to leave the EU in 2016, a host of businesses have moved their head offices from London to Amsterdam.