Benoit Nevouet is the Luxembourg Branch Manager for Bank of America. He took his functions in May of this year.
AMCHAM: Please tell us the story of Bank of America’s history as well as the current services, number of employees in the USA and asset valuation.
Bank of America is one of the world’s leading financial institutions, serving individual consumers, small and middle-market businesses and large corporations with a full range of banking, investing, asset management and other financial and risk management products and services. It is also a global leader in transaction services, corporate and investment banking and trading across a broad range of asset classes, serving corporations, governments, institutions and individuals around the world. The company serves clients through operations across 35 countries around the world, as well as in thousands of communities in the United States. The result: A powerful combination of local knowledge, international expertise and its global platform.
Please tell our readers about the activities of Bank of America in Europe.
Bank of America has invested heavily to build a diversified business across Europe. We provide global solutions to the largest corporate and financial institution clients headquartered across the region, as well as subsidiaries of our large global multinational clients.
Please explain why Bank of America has decided to set up business activities in Luxembourg and the scope of activities planned.
The launch demonstrates our ongoing commitment to supporting clients in key countries where they have cash management requirements; this gives us the opportunity to help our clients build resilient enterprises. The bank will be able to support clients – Large Corporate, and Financial Institutions, with a primary focus on NBFIs (non-bank financial institutions) – with setting up local bank accounts and provide in-country transaction banking products and services. This launch is a significant milestone for businesses in the region. Luxembourg is the second largest investment fund centre in the world, after the United States, so the bank will deepen its global cash management services to these NBFIs. Also, many multi-national companies have chosen Luxembourg as a European hub for their activities and it is also home to the European Investment Bank. We are proud to support business opportunities and responsible growth in this important financial centre.
What factors did you study during your due diligence of Luxembourg as a business location?
As mentioned earlier, Luxembourg is the second largest investment fund centre in the world, after the United States so it’s a cornerstone setup for asset management. Furthermore, our clients have asked us to open a branch in Luxembourg – we have a client-driven strategy and operate where our clients need us to be.
What are the issues which concern you with regards to using Luxembourg as a business location?
We do not identify any specific challenges which are unique from those that any other banking provider faces in establishing a new branch.
What status and what results do you hope to achieve during your first 5 years in Luxembourg?
Bank of America is first focused on bringing across existing clients which it served from a partner bank in Luxembourg to its new branch. We’ll then start to add new clients and support them with their cash management needs. Clients will include large corporate, banks, insurers, investment funds and other non-bank financial firms.
What is the current status of the digital transformation process within Bank of America and what are your current plans in this regard?
Now more than ever, consumers and businesses depend on technology, and Bank of America continues to deliver efficient and reliable digital financial solutions. Technology is at the forefront of our client strategy and we deliver all we do through a customer lens – it’s all about making a difference to our client’s day-to-day business. For example, recently the bank launched enhancements to CashPro Chat, a virtual service advisor within the CashPro banking platform which will help clients to quickly view transactions, find information about their accounts and navigate CashPro functionality.
What is your key motivation in establishing this branch?
We are excited to develop our franchise in Luxembourg and to become a key contributor to the development of this highly recognised international financial marketplace. Implementing a presence in a new country is always an exciting and unique project; it requires collaboration with various stakeholders in order to make it a success, thereby inciting enthusiasm and commitment across the whole organisation. As part of the bank’s commitment to CSR, I also look forward to seeing the ways in which we are able to contribute to the local community.
How Bank of America is committed to local communities? Any examples?
Indeed, the bank believes investment in the arts helps build communities and I’m really pleased to be part of an institution which is a longstanding supporter of arts, culture and heritage around the world. The bank supports a wide range of non-profit organisations with funding and programming to help promote cultural sustainability and make the arts more accessible and inclusive. This includes sponsorship of major exhibitions, loaning its own art collection to cultural organisations at no cost, and the Bank of America Art Conservation Project, which provides grants to conserve historically significant works of art.