BNP Paribas Adds Bankers to Chase ‘Incredible’ Nordic Wealth

The chief executive of BNP Paribas SA in the Nordic region says he’s hiring to latch on to a surge in the ranks of the super rich.

Eirik Winter, who’s been running BNP’s Nordic business since late 2018, is working on grabbing market share amid an “incredible amount of wealth creation” in the region, he said in an interview.

Nordic economies appear to have weathered the pandemic better than other parts of the world, with gross domestic product rates almost back to where they were before the crisis. What’s more, the region has emerged as a surprisingly effective incubator for startups. It feels like there are “new billion-krona companies by the minute,” Winter said. And that’s where BNP plans to step in.

“New entrepreneurs are often very rich on paper but have low liquidity,” he said. “So we want to help them monetize what they created and also help them to diversify their wealth in the best possible way when they do an IPO or exit of sorts.”

Nordic GDP Outperformance

BNP Paribas Adds Bankers to Chase ‘Incredible’ Nordic Wealth

What Bloomberg Economics Says...

“Sweden’s swift return from the pandemic should lessen the probability of the Riksbank resorting to negative rates, especially after it expanded bond-buying in November. It may even nudge the central bank toward hinting at a withdrawal of stimulus further out. For now, and with much of the global economy still grappling with Covid-19 infections, we expect Governor Stefan Ingves and his colleagues to remain firmly on hold.”

--Johanna Jeansson, Nordic economist

--Click here for the full report

Nordic entrepreneurs have been instrumental in producing some of the world’s best known tech startups, including Spotify and Skype, whose founders are now billionaires. The pipeline has continued since with names like Klarna and Trustly now preparing for initial public offerings that look set to propel their owners into the ranks of the extremely rich.

Winter expects the Nordic countries to continue to outperform most other geographic markets, much as they did during the Covid crisis. The region “tends to grow faster than many of the other parts of the world measured in GDP growth, stock market development,” he said. “And that’s become even clearer during the pandemic.”

BNP Paribas Adds Bankers to Chase ‘Incredible’ Nordic Wealth

BNP’s new hires have come from JPMorgan Chase & Co., Nordea Bank Abp, Barclays, Deutsche Bank AG, Morgan Stanley, Citigroup Inc. and UBS AG, Winter said. Since he started, he’s added about 60 people, and built an investment banking unit that now has a headcount of about 20.

Read more: BNP Paribas Hires Bonnier to Head Nordic Family Offices Business

BNP has roughly 900 employees across the Nordics, about a third of whom work in or with corporate and institutional banking. That makes it the biggest international bank operating in the region, measured by headcount.

©2021 Bloomberg L.P.

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