Germany’s largest single retail bank
Postbank’s highly diverse sales channels make it easily accessible to customers at all times – at its branches, through its mobile sales force, online or by telephone. It has the most extensive branch network of any bank in Germany, with its own 855 branches offering Postbank products along with expert advice on financial services. These branches are complemented by several thousand Deutsche Post outlets where selected Postbank services are available. Over 4,200 independent agents within Postbank Finanzberatung AG make up the Postbank mobile sales force and specialise in private mortgage lending, asset accumulation and retirement pension products.
Postbank’s wide range of standardised banking products is designed to meet the typical needs of private and business customers. Along with traditional savings and current account offerings, these primarily include private mortgage lending and home savings products but personal loans, securities and pension and insurance products are also gaining in importance. At the same time, Postbank is Germany’s largest issuer of credit and debit cards. It holds a leading position in German online and telephone banking. Postbank online customers now have 2.8 million current accounts and 590,000 brokerage accounts. Some 3.7 million customers use telephone banking.
Postbank plans in future to restrict its activities as a “banking service producer” to areas where it can achieve economies of scale and has restructured its insurance business accordingly. The insurance subsidiaries have been sold to the Talanx Group, with which Postbank has entered into a long-term marketing alliance in life and accident insurance. The company has also further boosted its sales capabilities, for example by co-operating with Tchibo and HUK-Coburg. Both companies offer their customers basic Postbank products such as current and savings accounts.
The German retail banking market remains fiercely competitive. Postbank has successfully held its own here as Germany’s largest single retail bank. In terms of customer numbers, it’s market share increased to a pleasing 9.5% (previous year: 8.8%). In the savings segment, where the total volume of deposits came to €43.9 billion, Bundesbank statistics show an increase in Postbank’s market share from 7.4% to 8.1% at the end of 2007. The market share of the €16.6 billion in home saving deposits remained stable at 13.6%. Postbank comfortably achieved its target of attracting a million new customers; its market share in business with new customers came to 12% (previous year: 13%). In new current account business, Postbank had a record year despite fierce competition, with 587,000 consumer accounts opened between January and December (previous year: 469,000).
Postbank further improved its volumes in the private mortgage business from €62.3 billion to €68.0 billion. Due primarily to the VAT increase and the abolition of the home owner’s allowance, the operating environment for the private mortgage lending business was marked by a strong decline in demand. Despite low demand and strong competition, Postbank, at 8.6%, almost reached its goal of a more than 10% increase in the volume of self-brokered private mortgage loans.