The former ceo of Santander launches private bank, Unique Bank

After five years in "the gutter", as Javier Marín (Madrid, 1966), has defined his time outside of the banking, the ceo of Santander until November of 2014, ha

The former ceo of Santander launches private bank, Unique Bank

After five years in "the gutter", as Javier Marín (Madrid, 1966), has defined his time outside of the banking, the ceo of Santander until November of 2014, has returned to the financial sector. Marin, who left the entity with the arrival of Ana Botín after being appointed by her father, Emilio Botín, has presented its new financial project: Singular Bank.

The entity, which will keep its current name of Self Bank for digital services, a combined offering of private banking for clients with more than half a million euros and investment services through the mobile or Internet customers digital "without a minimum requirement of capital, but who are active with their savings", in the words of Marin.

In a moment that banks do not find investors and their prices fall in the Stock market due to the low profitability, the emergence of a new entity is a great novelty. Unique Bank owned 90% of the private equity fund american Warburg Pincus, a 5% to Marin and the other 5% to the rest of the officers.

Expected to "start earning money" at the end of 2022, according to its ceo. That was the number two Santander has forecast that the bank will continue losing money in 2020 and 2021, while expected to get into positive figures "at the end of next year." "The loss of money does not worry me, also Amazon is losing money and continues to grow. What worries me is that it is not perceived as a different entity, able to reach out to potential clients," he highlighted.


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The bank has 41 private bankers and three offices: Madrid, Seville and Zaragoza. Expected to continue to grow, but has not said how many branches to open. Marin admitted that their new clients will come from other entities, of those "who have not perceived that they have changed the forms of relationship" and that they "keep applications of the TWENTIETH century, little flexible and efficient." With respect to its past, said that Singular Bank will have some similarities with Banif in terms of their platforms ready to assist the customer in the design of the investment.

Return of the pre-retirement

After leaving Santander, Marin had the right to 800,000 euros per year until his retirement. However, he has opted to charge this amount one time, that is to say, all of their rights of pre-retirement in a single payment by the 23 years of work as director general of the entity, as explained after the presentation. This money is required not to compete against the Santander, something that was considered did in the summer of 2018 when he entered the capital Self Bank. After negotiations with the banco Santander, in 2019 returned "a figure close to seven million euros of the pre-retirement charged," he commented, which corresponds to the years remaining to collect until his retirement. Marin has now 53 years old.

with Respect to an eventual ipo, the ceo has recognized that "it could be an interesting topic", although he has come to understand that it is still early. Currently the bank account with 500 million euros in deposits, € 500 million in securities and 1,000 million in funding.

In regard to possible corporate operations, Marin has predicted "consolidation opportunities" in the banking sector, especially between the actors small. "When we look at opportunities in inorganic, we analyse them to see if they have any sense, financial, and strategic", it has advanced.

"The focus is to provide a service of quality and different where the customers feel proud to work with us", has sustained Marin, which has set itself the goal of "being the best bank of Spain for each one of the customers".

"As a bank we have to provide a strategy of 360 degrees. There is that you can transform the model into a platform of services to provide the client with customized solutions based on the data", have been detailed to Marin.

In this sense, Singular Bank will offer three models of relationship with the client. In the first place, the bank will have the platform of digital Self Bank —which will retain the brand— and bankers-on remote to the clients who are more independent.

The other two options will be the advice "singular" with a private banker and the "discretionary management unique" with custom solutions. These last will be directed to customers of greatest heritage, around half a million euros.

In this sense, Marín has put the focus on the national market and plans to open soon an office in Barcelona. "If we find a team that comulgue with our way of doing things, we will open an office in Barcelona, is a major destination," he explained.

Updated Date: 14 January 2020, 18:00

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