Luxembourgh Times
Annual results

Deutsche Bank posts €148m profit, looks to switch buildings

The Luxembourg subsidiary reported a 62% increase in net profits, reaching €148 million in 2021

Deutsche Bank has been located in its Kirchberg building since the 1990s, but is now looking to move into more modern premises

Deutsche Bank has been located in its Kirchberg building since the 1990s, but is now looking to move into more modern premises © Photo credit: Guy Jallay

The Luxembourg outlet of Deutsche Bank increased net profits by more than 60% to €148 million in 2021 as the bank is looking to move out of its iconic Kirchberg building where it had been located since the 1990s.

The 2021 result eclipsed the profit the bank made the previous year when it reached €91 million and the bank's CEO expects a "satisfactory operating result" in 2022.

The 2021 results make Luxembourg the group's third most profitable location, just behind the US and the UK - but before Germany where it was founded - Deutsche Bank Luxembourg CEO Frank Rückbrodt told journalists on Thursday as he unveiled the unit's annual results.

"We have recorded further growth in our bottom line, enabling us to both build up voluntary reserves and distribute a dividend of approximately €151 million to our parent company", he said.

The Luxembourg unit is owned by Deutsche Bank AG, headquartered in Frankfurt, and has previously drawn the attention of an EU-funded think tank that said the group had booked over 20% of all its profits in Luxembourg but employed just 1% of its entire staff in the tiny country.

In 2021, the bank paid €42 million to the tax office on an operating profit of €294 million, according to its annual report.

In Luxembourg, the bank specialises in corporate banking which represented three quarters of its revenues, private banking which accounted for roughly 20% and the remaining came from investment banking, Rückbrodt said.

Owing to geopolitical uncertainties, the bank chose to make a provision of €75 million, which takes overall reserves to over €360 million, he said.

That move came even though sanctions against Russia posed "no material risk" to the bank, Rückbrodt added. Deutsche Bank had been winding down business relations with the country since 2014 when Russia illegally annexed Crimea, he said. It would be affected, however, by the consequences of the war on rising commodity prices, which are driving up inflation, he added.

Despite a bullish 2021 performance, the bank announced it is set to ditch its iconic Kirchberg building that it has occupied since 1991 for newer, more modern premises. The company is looking to move in the next "couple of years", but no new location has been found yet, Rückbrodt said.

Deutsche Bank was one of the first foreign banks to move to Luxembourg in the 1970s and the Grand Duchy was the location of the group's first foreign subsidiary.