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Saxo Bank buys Binckbank for EUR 424 million

The Dutch online bank accepted an offer from the Danish investment bank. Saxo Bank seeks to grow its online trading and investment business, as competition in the sectors is mounting. The purchase is comprised of equity and cash.

According to BinckBank’s CEO Vincent Germyns, the bank must scale in order to keep the competition at bay and bear regulatory burdens. Germyns also said that the bank wasn’t actively looking for entities to buy his company; however, other parties, which he would not name, had shown interest over the year, but negotiations never resulted in concrete offers.

Saxo Bank CEO Kim Fournais noted that although the Dutch online broker had lots of customers and decent brands, the bank would incur significant costs in developing its technology and platforms. Saxo Bank currently has around 200,000 customers and BinckBank 630,000, and next year Fournais says the company is aiming for over one million users.

Founder Kalo Bagijn, who left Binck in 2008, told the Financieel Dagblad: “Of course it’s disappointing that the bank is losing its independence,” and that “Emotionally, it’s a shame, but rationally selling is the best option. Binck let a too big a gap grow between themselves and their competition and in this market you either take over or be taken over. The present bank didn’t have the former option any more”.

The bank had a stock market value of one billion Euro at its highest point, then falling to around EUR 300 million.

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