Bank Fortuna to close shop, Spuerkeess takes on clients
Cooperative bank Fortuna, which had long been looking for a cash-rich partner to continue its business, is set to close shop in Luxembourg after striking a deal with the state-owned lender Spuerkeess to take on the bank's clients.
"Spuerkeess and Fortuna Bank confirm that they have put in place a simplified and fast process [...] allowing Fortuna Bank customers who wish to do so to easily become a Spuerkeess customer", the banks said in a press release on Monday morning. Clients would be informed in the next few weeks, the press release said, as the bank will "progressively" wind down its activities.
An earlier deal with Bank of Beirut, which wanted to acquire Fortuna - founded in 1920 - in Luxembourg to expand into Europe, fell through in 2020 as Lebanon entered a financial crisis and defaulted on its debt.
According to its annual report, Fortuna Bank made a profit of €7.7 million in 2021. It had registered losses in each 2019 and 2020, while net profit came in at just €52,000 in 2018, down from €479,000 the year before, with costly IT infrastructure sapping the bank's pockets.
The cooperative bank lists 8 beneficial owners in the country's business register, each of whom hold less than 10% of the shares.
On Linkedin, the bank lists more than 20 employees.