LLB acquires Zürcher Kantonalbank Österreich AG

Vienna, 2 July 2024. Liechtensteinische Landesbank AG (LLB) has signed a purchase agreement to acquire 100 per cent of the shares of Zürcher Kantonalbank Österreich AG, with locations in Salzburg and Vienna. This transaction aligns with the LLB Group’s strategy and will see it increase its business volume by around CHF 3 billion. LLB Austria is thus further expanding its position as one of the leading asset management banks in the country.

The LLB Group has been operating its Vienna branch via its subsidiary Liechtensteinische Landesbank (Österreich) AG since 2009 and has significantly expanded its asset management business in Austria over the past 15 years through strong organic growth and acquisitions. 

Gabriel Brenna, CEO of the LLB Group, explains: "After the acquisition of Semper Constantia Privatbank in 2018 and the takeover of Credit Suisse's private banking clients in 2021, we are taking a further step in terms of acquisition-based growth in Austria. This, in turn, underscores the strategic importance of the Austrian market for the LLB Group."

Strengthening the home market of Austria

Zürcher Kantonalbank Österreich AG employs around 120 members of staff. With its strong positioning in private banking and its asset management expertise, it represents an ideal addition to the LLB Group's activities in Austria. Its clientele are primarily wealthy Austrian and German private clients. ZKB Austria's portfolio of products and services as well as its advisory philosophy are aligned with those of LLB Austria and complement its existing range of services. ZKB Austria will contribute to the targeted expansion and further development of the Salzburg location, resulting in LLB Austria having a strong presence at the two most important wealth management locations in the country. 

Acquisition to take place in two stages

The transaction – subject to approvals from the supervisory authorities and under anti-trust law – will take place as follows: As a first step, LLB AG will acquire Zürcher Kantonalbank Österreich AG. The takeover comprises client assets totalling around EUR 3.1 billion (roughly CHF 3.0 billion). The second step involves merging ZKB Austria with Liechtensteinische Landesbank (Österreich) AG.

Clients benefit from excellent services and high credit ratings

In view of the similarities in their ownership structures, business models and markets, corporate culture and range of services, the LLB Group is confident that it can ensure continuity in the high-quality support provided to Zürcher Kantonalbank Österreich AG’s current clientele, while at the same time offering its staff interesting and valuable future prospects as a values-based company. 

Natalie Flatz, Chairwoman of the Supervisory Board of LLB Austria, states: "For the LLB Group, this is the next logical step in further expanding our position as one of the leading asset management banks in Austria. With our award-winning asset management services and our expertise in real estate and family services, as well as being the fund powerhouse of the LLB Group, our clients receive a unique range of investment expertise and tailored advice. We are delighted to be welcoming our new clients and employees and continuing to grow together."

Florence Schnydrig Moser, Chairwoman of the Supervisory Board of Zürcher Kantonalbank Österreich AG: "In LLB, we have found a strong partner for a long-term successful future. As the longest-established bank in Liechtenstein, and with a Moody's rating of Aa2, LLB represents security and stability. I am convinced that this merger will have a positive impact on both employees and clients alike."

The current transaction is subject to approval by the Federal Competition Authority and the supervisory authorities. Both parties have agreed not to disclose the purchase price, which will be paid in cash. The LLB Group's Tier 1 ratio will decrease by around 1 per cent, which continues to put it significantly above the target of more than 16 per cent.