Nordea Reorganizes $390 Billion Wealth Unit With a Digital Goal

(Bloomberg) -- Nordea Bank AB is reorganizing its wealth management business to step up its focus on digital services.

Gustaf Unger, the bank’s new co-head of wealth, says the change means Nordea will move 40 people into a new unit. The intention is “to put even more emphasis on the digital deliveries to our customers,” he said by phone. “Their demands on that side are only increasing.”

Nordea won’t hire, or fire, people as part of the reorganization, according to Unger, who was previously head of Life and Pensions. As part of the move, Nordea named Katja Bergqvist co-head of wealth, with Unger. Bergqvist was previously head of the Investment Solutions and Advisory Centre, which is now being split up. Snorre Storset remains head of the overall business area, which has been renamed wealth and asset management.

Nordea already has a robot adviser, called Nora, “but the demands of tomorrow will look different from today, so we need to be in the forefront,” Unger said.

Nordea’s wealth division has the highest return on capital at risk of the bank’s four business areas. So-called ROCAR in the first quarter fell to 29 percent from 35 percent in the fourth, according to the bank’s data.

Meanwhile, Nordea is trying to reassure customers that a technical breakdown that paralyzed its net and mobile bank services on Tuesday won’t happen again. Nordea spokeswoman Janina Pfalzer said those affected were able to get help via a 24/7 customer service center, and that card payments were unaffected.

“But, as said, we are deeply sorry for the inconvenience,” she said.

“We make large investments in new digital services to meet the new expectations and changed behavior of our customers,” she said. “Unfortunately technical issues can occur in a digital society.”

Pfalzer also said that Nordea has “now started a thorough review of what was behind yesterday’s technical issue, but at this stage it’s too early to say anything further.”

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