Banco Santander expects its retail and corporate clients in the UK to begin to feel the consequences and impact of Brexit during 2021, according to a strategic report published by its UK subsidiary.
Santander acknowledges that the fact of avoiding a ‘divorce’ without an agreement helped to eliminate a significant source of uncertainty during the first quarter of the year. However, this will not prevent an impact as the year progresses.
“We are embarking on a new relationship with the European Union that will have a considerable impact on the way our customers operate,” the bank said in a letter included in the strategic report.
Santander UK subsidiary stressed that, regardless of the agreement, the way in which clients now relate to the European Union has changed and could include greater tensions. Nevertheless, the corporate and commercial banking team is continuously advising clients on how to deal with the new rules and requirements.
Santander UK CEO Nathan Bostock flagged Banco Santander’s ‘One Europe’ initiative, which will allow him to work closely with the teams in Spain, Portugal and Poland, and align with them in this new context.
A few months ago, Banco Santander reshaped the organisation of its European top management in order to boost profitability by creating ‘One Europe.’ This is led by Antonio Simões, who joined the group from HSBC on September 1, replacing Guerry Byrne.
The Europe team now includes twelve managers in three groups, including ‘countries’ (the rest are ‘functions’ and ‘business’). Countries is made up of the four local CEOs: Rami Aboukhair in Spain, Nathan Bostock in the UK, Pedro Castro e Almeida in Portugal and Michael Gajewski in Poland.
The four country managers are responsible for their respective income statements and the distribution network in coordination with the European business and functional leaders. They report to Simões, who in turn reports to José Antonio Alvarez, CEO of the financial group.