SOURCE: Glitnir

April 30, 2007 12:38 ET

Glitnir Appoints New CEO: Lárus Welding Takes Over Baton From Bjarni Ármannsson in Glitnir

Link to photos of Lárus Welding, new CEO, Glitnir

REYKJAVIK, ICELAND -- (MARKET WIRE) -- April 30, 2007 --Picture 1 (http://hugin.info/133924/R/1123029/207345.jpg

Lárus Welding has been appointed CEO of Glitnir, after Bjarni Ármannsson, who has served as the bank's CEO for the past 10 years, stepped down today. Welding has been Managing Director for Landsbanki's London Branch since 2003. He started his career in Glitnir's (then Íslandsbanki's) Corporate Banking division in 1999. Welding takes on responsibility for Glitnir's 1,900 employee strong organisation, with offices in 10 countries. At the end of first quarter 2007, Glitnir had a market capitalisation of EUR 4.5 billion and EUR 25.3 billion in total assets.

Over the next few days, Welding and Ármannsson will visit many of Glitnir's locations to meet staff, rating agencies, analysts and media.

"Under Bjarni Ármannsson's decade at the helm of Glitnir, the bank has been renowned for bold leadership and a fantastic track record in shareholder value development. I feel extremely proud and honoured to be asked to take on the position as Glitnir's new CEO," said Lárus Welding. Welding said his vision for the bank is to continue building on its strong expertise in the home markets, Iceland and Norway; to further consolidate Glitnir's position in the Nordic region and the UK in capital markets, asset management, investment banking and banking operations; and to develop Glitnir's Luxembourg-based private banking operations.

"Glitnir has developed well and is fast turning into a strong brand in the markets where we operate. In my opinion, the bank's core values - fast, smart and thorough - pinpoint exactly what it takes to succeed in today's marketplace. Glitnir's employees are known for their professionalism and dedication, and I look forward to being part of their strong team," commented Welding.

Welding stated his support to Glitnir's niche segment strategy:

"Glitnir's unique global strategy in the industry segments seafood/food, offshore service vessels and renewable/geothermal energy is a key strength for the bank in very competitive European and global markets. I hope my experience from the vital UK market will contribute to further consolidating our strong operation and position in London. With the planned opening of an office in New York this autumn, Glitnir has become a truly global operation," said Welding. Since Glitnir started expanding abroad in 2001, the group has built a strong network of subsidiaries in Norway, Sweden, Denmark and Finland, as well as banks, branches and offices in Luxembourg, London, Moscow, Shanghai and Halifax.

"Glitnir's recent acquisitions of 68.1 percent of the shares in FIM, with operations in Finland and Russia, and 91 percent of Leimdörfer in Sweden and Finland, have been very well received by the market, and I look forward to making the integration of these new subsidiaries a success for shareholders, staff and customers," commented Welding.

"Lárus Welding has a solid track record in banking, and the Board of Directors is extremely pleased that he has accepted the position as Glitnir's new CEO. Over the past years, Glitnir's shareholders have enjoyed a sustained period of strong performance, and we are confident that Lárus Welding will continue to grow shareholder value and broaden our international investor base in the years to come," commented Torsteinn M. Jónsson, who was elected new Chairman of Glitnir's Board of Directors today. Glitnir's new board of directors comprises Björn Ingi Sveinsson, Haukur Gudjónsson, Jón Sigurdsson, Katrín Pétursdóttir, Pétur Gudmundarson, Skarphedinn Berg Steinarsson and Torsteinn M. Jónsson (Chairman).

Lárus Welding holds a degree in business administration from the University of Iceland. He is a licensed securities broker and a graduate in Corporate Finance from the UK Securities Institute. Welding joining Landsbanki in 2003 as General Manager for the Landsbanki London branch, with operations primarily in Corporate and Investment Banking. He previously worked for the accounting firm JHR ehf. (1997-1999), the Central Bank of Iceland (1998) and the Icelandic Investment Bank (FBA) hf. (1999-2003). FBA merged with Íslandsbanki, now Glitnir Bank. Lárus Welding is married and has two daughters.

Bjarni Ármannsson, who steps down from his position as Glitnir's Chief Executive Officer today, has been with the bank and its predecessors since 1997. "I have enjoyed a fabulous 10 years as CEO. I am extremely proud to have been part of a team that has multiplied the bank's shareholder value more than 20-fold, and to have headed the bank through its successful transition from a local Icelandic bank to an international financial services provider. The Glitnir staff and culture have been a vital part of my life and will retain a place in my heart," said Bjarni Ármannsson. "I leave a bank that is progressing forward at full throttle, and I congratulate Lárus Welding on his position as Glitnir's new CEO. Lárus and I will work together to ensure a smooth transition and make this change a positive step forward for the bank.

Presentation of Glitnir Bank's First Quarter Results + Glitnir's new CEO Lárus Welding

Glitnir will host the following presentations and webcasts in relation to the publication of its first quarter results for 2007. Lárus Welding, Glitnir's new CEO will participate together with Bjarni Ármannsson. An English version of the presentation will be available on www.glitnirbank.com

Presentation in London, UK - new location

Bjarni Ármannsson, CEO, will present Glitnir's first quarter results for 2007 to shareholders and market participants on Tuesday, 1 May, at 4 p.m. at Great Eastern Hotel at 40 Liverpool Street, London EC2M 7QN. Lárus Welding, Glitnir's new CEO will participate together with Bjarni Ármannsson. Participants should register with Vala Pálsdóttir, Head of Investor Relations, by e-mail at ir@glitnir.is or by calling +354 440 4989.

International telephone conference and web cast

Glitnir will host a live presentation via webcast in English at 8.00 a.m. (10.00 a.m. CET), Wednesday 2 May. Lárus Welding, Glitnir's new CEO, will participate together with Bjarni Ármannsson. Bjarni will present the results and answer questions. Lárus will do the same. A live broadcast of the presentation can be accessed on Glitnir's web: www.glitnirbank.com

Presentation in Reykjavík, Iceland

Bjarni Ármannsson, CEO, will present Glitnir's first quarter results for 2007 to shareholders and market participants on Wednesday, 2 May, at 9.15 a.m. at Glitnir's headquarters at Kirkjusandur in Reykjavík. The house opens at 9 a.m. with breakfast for guests. Lárus Welding, Glitnir's new CEO will participate together with Bjarni Ármannsson.

Lunch presentation in New York, USA

Bjarni Ármannsson, CEO, will present Glitnir's first quarter results for 2007 on Tuesday 15 May, at 12 p.m. at 875 Third Avenue (btw 52nd & 53rd), 4th floor Stockholm Conference Room, New York, NY 10022. Lárus Welding, Glitnir's new CEO will participate together with Bjarni Ármannsson. Participants should register with Vala Pálsdóttir, Head of Investor Relations, by e-mail at ir@glitnir.is or call +354 440 4989.

Media interviews bookings

To book media interviews, please contact Bjørn Richard Johansen, Managing Director, Corporate Communication, by sending an e-mail message to brj@glitnir.no or by calling mobile +47 47 800 100.

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 services 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, Glitnir Bank ASA, Glitnir Securities, Glitnir Factoring and Glitnir Property Holding (with partners). Glitnir's subsidiary BNbank owns 45 percent of the shares in Norsk Privatøkonomi ASA, an independent financial advisory company with 14 branches in key areas of Norway). In Sweden, Glitnir owns the leading Swedish brokerage firm Glitnir AB. Glitnir Property Group recently acquired 91 % of the shares in Leimdörfer AB, the leading commercial real estate advisor in Sweden. The group also recently acquired 68.1 percent of the shares in the leading Finnish asset management company FIM, with operations around Finland and in Stockholm and Moscow. (Glitnir has made a tender offer for all shares in FIM). Glitnir operates branches in London and Copenhagen. The group has representative offices in Halifax, Canada and Shanghai, China, and plans to open an office in New York in 2007. Glitnir is listed on the Icelandic Stock Exchange. For more information: www.glitnirbank.com

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Contact Information

  • For further information, please contact:
    Thorsteinn M. Jónsson
    Chairman, Glitnir
    phone through +47-47 800 100

    Lárus Welding
    CEO of Glitnir
    phone: + 354-440-4005 or through
    +47-47 800 100

    Bjørn Richard Johansen
    Managing Director, Corporate Communication, Glitnir
    e-mail: brj@glitnir.no
    mobile +47 47 800 100

    For photos, please contact: akj@glitnir.no

    You may also submit questions by telephone. Dial-in numbers are:
    UK + 44 (0) 208 817 9301
    Norway + 47 231 629 47
    Finland + 358 969 37 97 35
    USA + 1 718 354 1226