February 02, 2007 07:11 ET

Glitnir announces organisational changes: Consolidates management to support international growth and local reach

REYKJAVIK, ICELAND--(CCNMatthews - February 02, 2007) -

Reykjavik, 2 February 2007 - Glitnir today announced changes to the group's organisational structure and plans to open office in New York to support its North American business. The aim of the organisational changes is to facilitate strong and profitable integration of all business units and to accommodate further growth.

Glitnir's new organisation is a matrix of functional, geographical markets and support divisions. The Business units are Markets, Investment Banking, Investment Management and Corporate Banking, while the geographical units are Iceland, Nordic, Europe and International. The support units are Finance & Risk Management, Shared Services and Corporate Development.

Three new Executive Vice Presidents will join Glitnir's management board: Birna Einarsdottir as EVP, Corporate Development; Helgi Anton Eiriksson as EVP, Investment Banking; and Magnus Bjarnason as EVP, International.

"Glitnir has had a remarkable development over the past years and has grown considerably with regards to geographic reach, client and product scope and financial results. The changes we are now making to our organisational structure are designed to reflect this reality and enable us to grow internationally. We are also adding investment management as a separate business unit. At the same time we are strengthening our business in Iceland by appointing Jon Didrik Jonsson CEO of our Icelandic operations," commented Glitnir's CEO Bjarni Armannsson. "Since 2004, we have acquired seven companies in Norway and Sweden and have opened offices in Denmark, Canada and China. Furthermore we have a bank in Luxembourg and a strong operation in the UK. Our new organisational structure reflects the international nature of our business and operations today, and positions Glitnir to absorb further growth. Today we are also announcing that we are opening an office in New York. The main function of the office will be to support the Bank's growth in North-America, especially within the renewable energy sector and the seafood sector"

Haukur Oddsson, who has served as EVP for Commercial Banking Iceland, will from now on work directly with the CEO on designated projects.

Glitnir has shown remarkable growth in recent years. The 2006 results, published earlier this week, show record after-tax profits of ISK 38.2 billion (EUR 435 m) an increase of 102% over 2005. Glitnir reported a record high after-tax return on equity of 39.4 percent in 2006.


Glitnir's new organisational matrix includes four business units, four geographical units and three supporting units:

Business area

-- Markets - led by Frank Ove Reite.
-- Investment Banking - led by Helgi Anton Eiriksson.
-- Investment Management - EVP to be announced later.
-- Corporate Banking - led by Gudmundur Hjaltason.

Geographical area

-- Iceland - led by Jon Didrik Jonsson.
-- Nordic - led by Frank Ove Reite.
-- Europe - led by Gudmundur Hjaltason.
-- International - led by Magnus Bjarnason.

Support units

-- Finance & Risk Management - led by Tomas Kristjansson.
-- Shared Services - led by Finnur Reyr Stefansson.
-- Corporate Development - led by Birna Einarsdottir.

The Business units

Markets has the overall responsibility for the group's capital markets activities, with business units in Oslo (Glitnir Securities), Reykjavik and Stockholm (Glitnir AB). The division also includes market research in Iceland, Norway and Sweden.

Investment Banking, which operates in Iceland, Norway, Denmark and the UK is responsible for the group's international corporate finance and equity investment activities.

Investment Management comprises private banking in Iceland and Luxembourg, and asset management in Iceland. Glitnir plans to integrate existing units and has ambitions of further expansion in the Nordic region and the UK.

Corporate Banking manages relationships with international key accounts that cross regional boarders.

The geographical units

Iceland comprises the business units Retail Banking, Domestic Corporate Banking, Asset Based Financing and Credit Card services..

Nordic comprises the geographic areas Norway and Sweden. It also includes the group's strategic growth function, as well as all Glitnir initiatives in the offshore supply niche segment globally. The subsidiaries BNbank, Glitnir Bank ASA and UNION Group are included in Nordic.

Europe comprises the geographical area of Continental Europe including Denmark, and the UK. The unit is divided into three areas: Northern Europe, with offices in Denmark and Luxembourg; UK and Southern Europe with an office in London; and international customers managed from Iceland. The unit also includes the global food/seafood niche segment.

International comprises the geographical areas North- and South America and Asia, as well as Investment Banking for Asia/Americas, and all Glitnir initiatives in the energy niche segment globally.

Supporting units

Corporate Development holds the overall responsibility for global marketing strategy, corporate communication and talent management.

Shared Services has key responsibility for information technology, back-office, branch services, general services and payroll processing.

Finance & Risk Management is responsible for risk management, credit control, international funding, interbank markets, accounting, planning & reporting, and legal & compliance services.

For further information, go to

About the new Executive Vice Presidents:

Birna Einarsdottir has worked in the financial sector for a number of years. Since 2004 she has been in charge of Glitnir's marketing and sales team and in 2006 she directed the bank's successful re-branding. Einarsdottir formerly worked for 6 years with Royal Bank of Scotland in Edinburgh and, prior to that, was director of marketing and sales at Islandsbanki. Einarsdottir has a B.Sc. in Business Administration and an MBA degree from The University of Edinburgh.

Helgi Anton Eiriksson was until now Glitnir's Global Seafood Director with responsibility for overall management of the bank's international seafood activities. Eiriksson joined Glitnir Bank in 2004 from Coldwater Seafood (UK) Ltd. where he served as director in the executive management team from 1995-2004. Since joining Glitnir, Eiriksson has lead Glitnir's drive into new seafood markets, building its globally leading position in the sector. Eiriksson holds a Cand. Oceon degree in Business Administration from the University of Iceland.

Magnus Bjarnason was until now Managing Director for Asia and Americas in Glitnir's Corporate Banking division. Before joining the bank in 2005, Bjarnason served as a diplomat at Iceland's missions in China, the USA and Canada. His previous experience also includes the banking and airline industries. Bjarnason has an MBA degree from Thunderbird, the Garvin School of International Management.

For photos: please contact

About Glitnir:

The financial group Glitnir offers universal banking and is a leading niche player in three global segments; seafood/food, sustainable energy, and offshore supply vessels. Glitnir considers Iceland and Norway its home markets. Services include retail, corporate and investment banking, stock trade and capital management. Glitnir is the sole owner of a bank in Luxembourg (Glitnir Bank Luxembourg S.A) and banks and financial services companies in Norway (BNbank and Glitnir bank, Glitnir Securities, Glitnir Factoring, and 50.1 percent of UNION Group. Glitnir's subsidiary BNbank recently acquired 45 percent of the shares in Norsk Privatokonomi ASA, an independent financial advisory company with 12 branches in key areas of Norway). In Sweden, Glitnir owns the leading Swedish brokerage firm Glitnir AB (formerly Fischer Partners). Glitnir operates branches in London and Copenhagen, and has representative offices in Halifax, Canada and in Shanghai, China. Glitnir is listed on the Icelandic Stock Exchange. Glitnir recently announced strong profits for 2006, with a return on equity after tax of 39.4 per cent. For more information go to: (English), (Icelandic) or (Norwegian).

Glitnir's new organisational chart --

Contact Information

  • Press contacts:
    Bjarni Ármannsson
    CEO, Glitnir
    mobile: +354 440 4005
    Bjørn Richard Johansen
    Managing Director, Corporate Communication, Glitnir,
    mobile: +47-47 800 100