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Profile of the DZ BANK Group

Partners in the Volksbanken Raiffeisenbanken cooperative financial network

The DZ BANK Group forms part of the German cooperative financial network, which includes around 800 Volksbanken Raiffeisenbanken and is one of Germany’s largest private-sector financial services organizations measured in terms of total assets. Within the cooperative financial network, DZ BANK AG functions as the central institution and is responsible for supporting the business of the cooperative banks in their regions and strengthening their competitiveness. It also operates as a corporate bank and acts as the holding company for the DZ BANK Group.

The DZ BANK Group includes Bausparkasse Schwäbisch Hall, DZ HYP, DZ PRIVATBANK, R+V Versicherung, TeamBank, the Union Investment Group, VR Smart Finanz, and various other specialized institutions. With their strong brands, the entities in the DZ BANK Group constitute key pillars in the range of financial products and services offered by the cooperative financial network. The DZ BANK Group delivers its strategy and range of services for the cooperative banks and their customers through its four business lines – Retail Banking, Corporate Banking, Capital Markets, and Transaction Banking.

This combination of banking, insurance, home savings, and personal investment products and services has a long and successful tradition in the cooperative financial network. The specialized institutions in the DZ BANK Group provide highly competitive products at reasonable prices within their specific areas of expertise. This ensures that the cooperative banks in Germany are able to offer their clients a comprehensive range of outstanding financial services.

Strong brands – strong partners Some of the DZ BANK Group’s brands

DZ BANK AG

DZ BANK is the second-largest commercial bank in Germany and the central institution in the Volksbanken Raiffeisenbanken cooperative financial network. It is the central institution for all cooperative banks in Germany, which number around 800 and between them hold the majority of its shares. Under the tagline ‘DZ BANK. Die Initiativbank’, it supports the business of the independent cooperative banks in their regions with the aim of strengthening their competitiveness. The combination of local customer knowledge and central product expertise has proved to be highly effective.

DZ BANK’s range of products and services extends from classic and innovative products, structuring, and issues, to trading and sales in the equity and bond markets. DZ BANK also acts as a corporate bank for businesses and institutions. It maintains branches and representative offices in key economic regions around the globe, helping businesses to further their international activities.

DZ BANK also acts as a holding company for the entities in the DZ BANK Group, each of which has its own strong brand and constitutes a key pillar in the range of financial products and services offered by the cooperative financial network.

DZ BANK aims to offer high quality not only for its customers, but also for its employees. With this in mind, it regularly arranges for its services as an employer to be reviewed by third parties. For example, the bank has won the Leading Employers Germany award for several years in succession. Since 2007, it has also regularly received the auditberufundfamilie® certificate for its life-stage-oriented HR policies. In 2020, for the second time, DZ BANK was certified as having participated in the work-life balance progress index of the German Federal Ministry for Family Affairs, Senior Citizens, Women and Youth, which has been collated annually since 2019. As part of this initiative, a tailored analysis is conducted in order to help companies improve their employees’ work-life balance.

For several years now, DZ BANK has received a number of awards in recognition of its training, study, and development programs: Fair Training (since 2018) and Fair Trainee Program (since 2012) from the trendence market research institute and Fair Company (since 2004) from Handelsblatt.

R+V Versicherung

R+V Versicherung is one of the leading insurance companies in Germany and has been on a growth trajectory for many years. It is the second-largest insurer in both the life and non-life sectors. Based in Wiesbaden, R+V enjoys the trust of almost nine million customers, who have insured around 26.5 million risks.

It forms part of the Volksbanken Raiffeisenbanken cooperative financial network and offers innovative, tailored insurance solutions. The product range encompasses all established types of insurance. For retail customers, R+V offers bespoke insurance and pension solutions. In its corporate business, R+V is traditionally closely associated with SMEs operating in industry, commerce, skilled trades, agriculture, and other areas of small and medium-sized business activity, and develops specific risk mitigation strategies for these businesses. R+V also takes on inward reinsurance business around the globe.

R+V’s significant financial strength has been constantly reaffirmed by leading rating agencies. For instance, S&P Global Ratings (formerly Standard & Poor’s) has repeatedly issued R+V Versicherung AG with a rating of AA– (very strong), while Fitch Ratings has given R+V Lebensversicherung AG an AA rating. The latter therefore currently enjoys the highest rating awarded by Fitch to any German life insurer. R+V has received a Top Employer Germany award and holds the Fair Company seal of approval. It also regularly occupies some of the top spots in numerous product ratings. In the agricultural insurance business, R+V has been ranked number one for many years in the image barometer of the Deutsche Landwirtschaftsgesellschaft (DLG) [German Agricultural Society].

R+V is also committed to sustainability and has an environmental management system certified by TÜV Rheinland.

Union Investment Gruppe

The Union Investment Group is the fund management specialist within the cooperative financial network and has been developing investment solutions for retail and institutional investors for 65 years. Around 4,000 employees manage assets amounting to €385.9 billion. In total, more than 4.8 million customers entrust Union Investment with their money. It is the German market leader for mutual funds.

Union Investment works closely with its partners in the local cooperative banks to provide retail investors with investment solutions that are tailored to their individual circumstances. Equity funds, multi-asset solutions, open-ended real estate funds, and fund-based saving in regular installments are especially popular products. Despite the turmoil in the stock markets, the total sum invested in 2020 by retail investors came to €8.8 billion. The volume of assets under management for retail investors amounted to €173.8 billion.

As an experienced risk manager, Union Investment provides domestic and international institutional investors with asset management concepts and sustainable investment solutions. In Germany, it is the second-largest partner to institutional investors such as corporations, banks, insurers, pension funds, and charitable foundations, for which it manages some €212.1 billion.

Union Investment has won a number of awards that bear testimony to the high quality of its services. It has a particularly strong track record in respect of the Capital Fund Compass: Union Investment is the only fund management company to have received the highest rating 18 times in succession. Furthermore, it again won a Top Employer award.

DZ HYP

DZ HYP is one of Germany’s leading real estate banks and the center of excellence for public-sector customers in the cooperative financial network. The bank serves corporate, retail, and public-sector customers. It does business with customers directly and as a partner to the local cooperative banks.

In its different lines of business, DZ HYP offers its partners and customers a wide range of financing solutions that are tailored to their needs and current market conditions. The resulting opportunities are pursued in collaboration with the local cooperative banks. Decentralized support for the local cooperative banks is a core aspect of DZ HYP’s sales activities. A broad, decentralized structure and close proximity to its customers enable DZ HYP to assist the local banks with their regional marketing.

In its corporate customer business, DZ HYP has its own direct business and also acts as a partner to the local cooperative banks. Customers in this area include commercial real estate investors and companies in the housing sector. DZ HYP focuses on real estate finance in the German market. Its target customers are investors, project developers, building contractors, and the housing sector. As part of the cooperative financial network, DZ HYP also works closely with local cooperative banks in its retail customer business. The product portfolio includes initial and follow-up finance for new builds, purchases, and modernization/renovation. Most of this business is brokered by the local cooperative banks. As the cooperative financial network’s center of excellence for public-sector customers, DZ HYP helps the local cooperative banks to develop their business across Germany with local authorities and with their legally dependent enterprises, local associations, and institutions governed by public law. The core element of this business is the awarding of loans to public-sector entities and short-term loans to local authorities.

The bank has locations across Germany: its two headquarters in Hamburg and Münster, six real estate centers in Germany’s main commercial hubs (Hamburg, Berlin, Düsseldorf, Frankfurt, Stuttgart, and Munich), and five regional offices.

DZ PRIVATBANK

DZ PRIVATBANK is the cooperative private bank for the local cooperative banks. It operates as a center of excellence that specializes in individual solutions for private banking customers, fund services, and lending in euros and all other common currencies. Its business activities are focused on the German-speaking market and on close collaboration with the cooperative financial network. DZ PRIVATBANK operates from ten locations in Germany – Hamburg, Hannover, Oldenburg, Berlin, Leipzig, Düsseldorf, Frankfurt, Stuttgart, Nuremberg, Munich – and offices in Zurich and Luxembourg, where the head office is also situated. It is one of Germany’s largest asset managers, with assets under management of €20 billion.

The option of spreading assets across accounts in Germany, Luxembourg, and Switzerland and the provision of specialized products in each country are core pillars in a comprehensive portfolio of services for retail customers, businesses, and institutional clients. The range of services includes structuring and management of assets, pension planning, advice on charitable foundations, fund issuance, and general financing. The combination of local, national, and international wealth management expertise and cooperative values such as partnership, stability, and security is what makes DZ PRIVATBANK’s business model unique. As they say at DZ PRIVATBANK: “Weil nicht nur zählt, was zählbar ist” – Things you can count are not the only things that count.

VR Smart Finanz

In the Volksbanken Raiffeisenbanken cooperative financial network, VR Smart Finanz is the network partner for simple solutions for small and medium-sized enterprises. It thus specializes in the provision of quick and convenient financing solutions tailored to regional SMEs and the cooperative banks’ small-business and self-employed customers. The product range encompasses leasing, hire purchase, and loans. VR Smart Finanz also offers digital services that help business customers to manage their day-to-day finances.

Its strengths lie in reliable, digitally supported financing decisions made within just a few minutes. For example, ‘VR Smart flexibel’ is a business lending product that provides instant financing up to a sum of €100,000 and can be arranged entirely online on selected Volksbanken Raiffeisenbanken websites. ‘VR Smart express’ is a hire purchase solution offering financing up to €250,000, with a decision still being made during a meeting with the customer. During the coronavirus pandemic, VR Smart Finanz temporarily launched a loan product that is eligible for support from Germany’s KfW development bank so that the local cooperative banks have access to established digital processes for processing the loans.

VR Smart Finanz sees itself as a sustainable company that lives up to its responsibilities toward employees and the environment. Along with other entities in the DZ BANK Group, it has committed itself to the sustainable development goals of the UN Global Compact and to a groupwide climate strategy. The company has been awarded ECOPROFIT certification from the City of Frankfurt.

TeamBank AG

Offering the easyCredit consumer finance product in Germany, ‘der faire Credit’ in Austria, and the seamless cross-media payment process ‘ratenkauf by easyCredit’, TeamBank AG is the center of excellence for modern innovative liquidity management in the cooperative banks. It provides integrated, innovative products and services, provides customers with fully digitalized solutions and thus easy access to liquidity wherever they are and whenever they want. “We make it easy” is TeamBank’s maxim, symbolizing the unique corporate culture that has made the bank an attractive, award-winning employer for many years.

Schwäbisch Hall

Schwäbisch Hall is the largest building society and one of the leading providers of home finance in Germany, boasting around 7 million customers and around 8 million home savings and home finance contracts. It is a network partner to the cooperative banks and offers bespoke solutions for homes and house-building. The cooperative banks can obtain an extensive range of financing solutions from Schwäbisch Hall, including home savings, home finance, and government support programs. The building society has around 3,300 field staff and more than 3,200 inhouse employees, who provide Schwäbisch Hall customers with expert advice and support.

Schwäbisch Hall established BAUFINEX, a digital marketplace for brokers, in response to new market requirements and changing customer needs. The marketplace gives independent home finance brokers direct access to more than 450 product partners across Germany. What makes it unique is that more than 1,300 finance specialists from the cooperative network are on hand to provide personal advice. BAUFINEX emerged as a growth driver in 2020, generating a transaction volume of over €5 billion. The combination of digital services and regional market expertise provides added value for customers and strengthens the cooperative financial network’s activities as a product supplier in the digital age.

In the Top Employer competition, the Schwäbisch Hall Group has been in the top ten in the overall ranking across all industries for many years. Schwäbisch Hall was recently again ranked one of the best employers among financial institutions in Germany. It received a top score for talent recruitment and strategy, for employee training and development, for manager development, and for its strong corporate culture.