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Northern Bank and National Irish Bank on IT platform

Original announcement entitled "Northern Bank and National Irish Bank on Danske Bank's IT platform".

Stock Exchange Announcement No 5/2006

 During Easter, Danske Bank completed the planned migration of its two banks in Northern Ireland and the Republic of Ireland to Danske Bank’s platform.

The migration was completed successfully. This morning, all 95 Northern Bank branches and 59 Na-tional Irish Bank branches were ready to welcome their customers.

The two banks are now using the same processes and systems as the rest of the Group and offer prod-ucts matching Danske Bank’s product range.

“A shared platform is essential for achieving economies of scale, lower transaction costs and further growth,” says Peter Straarup, chief executive of Danske Bank. “Now, the customers will really begin to notice the benefits in the form of better offerings.”

The changes that the customers at Northern Bank and National Irish Bank will experience include:

  • New and improved products at competitive prices, including personal banking packages
  • A much more efficient and targeted service
  • Sophisticated internet banking facilities with new functions for both personal and business customers, including trading access to stock exchanges around the world; and, for business customers, access to Business eBanking, a version of Danske Bank’s business online service
  • Telephone advice supplied by a new contact centre manned by trained bankers
  • More decisions taken locally

Using Danske Bank’s processes and systems, the staff at Northern Bank and National Irish Bank will spend less time on administration and controls and will consequently get much more time to serve and advise customers.

Extensive integration
About 4,000 people have been working during Easter to ensure that the migration went as planned. Over the past year, 2,500 employees of the Danske Bank Group have been directly involved in prepar-ing the migration, some of them full time and others for shorter periods. The Group has carried out 55,000 tests, installed broadband lines in 180 locations and replaced 3,000 PC workstations with new ones. A total of 1.1 million customer accounts have been transferred to Danske Bank’s platform.

During the past year, the staff of the two banks in Northern Ireland and the Republic of Ireland have completed an extensive training programme to learn to use the new IT systems and products. In con-nection with the training programme, 450 employees of the two banks visited branches in Denmark to see how the systems work. These days, 300 employees from Denmark, Norway and Sweden have joined their colleagues in branches in the Republic of Ireland and Northern Ireland to help them man-age the transition to the new systems as seamlessly as possible.

A major player on the Irish isle
Northern Bank holds 20% of the market for personal customers and 33% of the market for business customers. In 2005, Northern Bank, which employs about 2,000, established a regional structure con-sisting of four regions with a finance centre in each. The bank’s goal is to recapture the position as absolute market leader.

National Irish Bank holds 3% of the market for personal customers and 4% of the market for business customers. National Irish Bank, which employs about 700, has five regions with a finance centre in each. The bank plans to open 15 or more new branches during the next three years. This corresponds to an increase in its distribution power of some 25%.

The acquisition of the two banks at the end of February 2005 at a price of DKr10.4bn made Danske Bank a major player on the Irish isle. Danske Bank still expects integration expenses to total about DKr1.5bn and to achieve synergies of a total amount of DKr350m with full effect in the accounts for 2008.

Peter Straarup, Chairman of the Executive Board of Danske Bank,
tel.: +45 33 44 01 07

Jørgen Klejnstrup, Member of the Executive Committee of Danske Bank,
tel.: +45 43 25 29 00

Don Price, Chief Executive Officer of Northern Bank,
tel.: +44 28 9004 8701

Andrew Healy, Chief Executive Officer of National Irish Bank,
tel.: +353 1 484 2144

Martin Gottlob, Head of Investor Relations,
tel.: +45 33 44 27 92