SOURCE: Glitnir

December 05, 2006 08:51 ET

Glitnir representative office in Shanghai, China, officially opened today: Grand opening with guests from Asia, China, Shanghai, Europe and Americas

REYKJAVIK, ICELAND -- (MARKET WIRE) -- December 5, 2006 --

Photos; 1. Iceland's Minister for Foreign Affairs, Valgerdur Sverrisdóttir, officially opened the Glinir Shanghai office today, 2. Iceland's Minister for Foreign Affairs, Mrs. Valgerdur Sverrisdóttir and Jiang Zhu, Glitnir's chief representative in Shanghai. For further photos, please e-mail:

Shanghai/Reykjavik/Oslo, 5 December 2006 - Glitnir, the Nordic/Icelandic-Norwegian financial group, today announced that the bank has officially opened its representative office in Shanghai, China. The official opening of Glitnir's office was performed by Iceland's Minister for Foreign Affairs, Mrs. Valgerdur Sverrisdóttir and with CEO Bjarni Ármannsson in Glitnir present. Officials from the Chinese government and Shanghai municipality, as well as representatives from the Nordic business community in Shanghai and Asia and China also took part in the opening ceremony.

Glitnir's Shanghai office will focus on providing banking and financial services within the bank's global niches; sustainable energy, seafood/food, and offshore supply. The main objective is to serve existing clients with bank and finance support on their projects in China. Then simularly service Chinese customers with a strategy in Glitnir's niche segments, or with need of a banking partner in the Nordic region or in markets where Glitnir operate. Glitnir is granted the formal approval for Glitnir Bank Shanghai as a representative office from the China Banking Regulatory Commission (CBRC), the Chinese banking regulator.

"The finance sector is important for the modern Iceland, and Glitnir has a fantastic track record in its international expansion. The office will play an important part of our trade and business with China, said Iceland's Minister for Foreign Affairs, Valgerdur Sverrisdóttir, when she officially opened the Glinir Shanghai office today.

During her visit to China Minister Valgerdur Sverrisdóttir also launched the Icelandic Business Forum, a framework for increased cooperation between the Icelandic Embassy in Beijing and Icelandic companies registered in China. Gunnar Snorri Gunnarsson, Iceland's Ambassador in China says: "An increasing number of Icelandic companies have offices here in China and still others are considering the options and exploring possibilities to raise their profile here. Most of these companies face the same challenges and although some are competitors the scope for cooperation is without a doubt considerable. The Icelandic Business forum will provide a framework to facilitate contacts and cooperation, explore possible joint projects and exploit potential synergies." Companies like Eimskip, Bakkavör (Creative Foods), Össur, Enex, Lexus, Green Diamond, Saeplast, CCP, Samskip, Icelandic and Icelandair as well as Glitnir will be members from the start. We plan to work closely with our Nordic partners like Norwegian Business Association - a successful network in Shanghai and China, says the Icelandic ambassador Gunnar Snorri Gunnarsson. Glitnir has already signed up for membership in Norwegian Business Association.

Glitnir is already extensively involved in the financing of geothermal energy projects in China. The other man objective of the new office in Shanghai will be servicing the broad banking needs of Glitnir's Chinese and other Asian clients, as well as of other clients with business interests in the region. Glitnir Research recently stated in the China Seafood report that the country is the largest producer of seafood in the world, representing today some 35 percent of the total global seafood production. As the leading Seafood Bank, it is of utmost importance for us to service our international clients that are involved in China, as well as Chinese and other international seafood companies that are working in China.

"As a leading global specialist bank in the sectors sustainable energy, seafood/food and offshore supply sector, Glitnir views China as an extremely exciting market. Our expertise in geothermal energy has already provided us with strong business opportunities, and our new Shanghai office will provide us with a vital foothold for broader activities in the region," says Bjarni Ármannsson, CEO of Glitnir.

Magnús Bjarnason, Glitnir's Managing Director Americas and Asia, comments: "Opening an office in Shanghai is an important step for Glitnir and for our customers in China and Asia. We are already involved in major energy projects in China, and have ambitions to expand activities in our other specialist segments as well as to provide support to home market customers who are entering or developing business in China."

Glitnir's office and operations in Shanghai will be directed by Jiang Zhu, as chief representative in Shanghai. Jiang Zhu holds an MBA from Maastricht School of Management in the Netherlands, and has more than 12 years banking experience with major European banks with a thorough understanding and know-how on banks' overall business, products and operation in China. He founded Standard Bank London Ltd, China Representative Office and worked more than 4 years as Chief Representative based in Shanghai. Jiang joined Glitnir in the spring of 2006 from InveStudio in Shanghai, where he has been managing partner since May 2003.

Jiang Zhu says the Shanghai office will remain true to the Glitnir brand, focusing on providing its customers smart banking solutions: "Our office is committed to delivering industry-specific financial services, ranging from convenient financing and tailored financial risk consulting, to identifying appropriate industrial partners in other parts of the world. We place great emphasis on industry expertise, and provide a team of specialist bankers who combine banking and industry experience - i.e. people who speak the industry language and are truly at home in both worlds."

For further information, please contact:
Bjarni Ármannsson, CEO, Glitnir, via phone  +47-47 800 100

Magnus Bjarnason, Glitnir's Managing Director Region Asia & Americas
in International Corporate Banking, mobile: +354-844 4523 and e-mail:

Jiang Zhu, Director & Chief Representative, China, mobile: + 86 139
016 118 75  or telephone; office + 86 21 5882 5088, e-mail:

The address of Glitnir's representative office in Shanghai is, Level
8, CitiGroup Tower, 33 HuaYuanShiQiao Road, Pudong Shanghai 200120,
P.R. China. Telephone: +86 21 5882 5088 and telefax:  +86 21 5882

Bjørn Richard Johansen, Managing Director, Corporate Communication,
mobile +47-47 800 100, e-mail:

Link to the Glitnir Research China Seafood report:

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 consider Iceland and Norway as 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 and Glitnir Kapitalforvaltning, the factoring company Glitnir Factoring, and 50.1 percent of Union Gruppen. Glitnir's subsidiary BNbank in Norway recently acquired 45 per cent of the shares in Norsk Privatøkonomi ASA, an independent financial advisory company with 12 branches in key areas of Norway). In Sweden, Glitnir owns the leading Swedish brokerage firm Fischer Partners. Glitnir operates branches in London and Copenhagen and representative offices in Halifax, Canada and in Shanghai, China. Glitnir is listed on the Icelandic Stock Exchange. Glitnir recently announced strong profits for the first nine months of 2006, with a return on equity after tax of 41.9 percent. For more information go to: (English), (Icelandic) or (Norwegian).

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