Citadele bank was registered as a joint stock company on 30 June 2010 and commenced its operations on 1 August 2010. Citadele was established as a result of implementation of an EC restructuring plan, which was approved by the Cabinet of Ministers of the government of Latvia in the spring of 2010 and pursuant to which AS Citadele Banka was to take over from AS Parex Banka certain assets and liabilities and other items, i.e. an undertaking. The transfer of undertaking took place on 1 August 2010. Citadele, the Latvian Privatisation Agency (LPA) and the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD) signed an agreement on 30 July 2010, whereby the EBRD took a shareholding of 25 % of share capital plus 1 voting share. 75% minus 1 share was owned by the LPA.
Following a tender process, the Latvian government decided to sell its 75% stake in Citadele to Ripplewood Advisors LLC and an international group of investors. EBRD retained its 25% minus one share stake in Citadele. Privatisation was concluded in April 2015.
Development of the bank
- Euromoney Awards of Excellence - Citadele declared “Central and Eastern Europe’s Best Bank Transformation” in Euromoney magazine’s annual "Euromoney Awards of Excellence”.
- Change of ownership - in April 2015, a consortium of international investors led by New York-based Ripplewood Advisors LLC and its founder Timothy Collins acquired a 75% plus one share stake in Citadele from the Latvian Privatization Agency. The European Bank for Reconstruction and Development holds a 25% minus one share stake.
- Supervisory Board joined by experienced shareholders – the newly elected Council consists of the representatives of Ripplewood, EBRD, as well as an independent Member of the Council. They each bring a wealth of experience from different sectors and geographies, and Citadele has been benefitting greatly from their combined insights and acumen.
- EC Restrictions removed - Until privatization closing in April 2015, Citadele was operating under the European Commission Restructuring plan. The plan placed a number of restrictions on Citadele, such as caps on lending and deposit amounts in all Baltic countries, a cap on the capital adequacy ratio, a dividend ban, and other restrictions.
- Rating upgrade - Moody's Investors Service upgraded Citadele bank's long-term deposit ratings to B1 from B2, and changed its long-term outlook for Citadele banka to “positive”. Additionally, Moody’s upgraded Latvia’s sovereign ratings to A3 from Baa1 reflecting continued macroeconomic improvements.
- EUR introduction - On the eve of the New Year, alongside with the accession of Latvia to the Eurozone, Citadele successfully performs switching of switched IT systems for the automatic exchange of Lats to Euros. Prime Minister Valdis Dombrovskis, Prime Minister of Estonia Andruss Ansip, Minister for Finance of Latvia Andris Vilks and the Prezident of the Bank of Latvia Ilmars Rimsevics withdrew the first Euro banknotes from a Citadele ATM.
- Moody’s Investors Service improved Citadele’s outlook - In the third quarter of 2013, the international rating agency Moody’s Investors Service revised the Citadele Group’s outlook from negative to stable, leaving the existing rating of the Citadele Group (B2/NotPrime/E+) unchanged.
- Privatisation process resumed - In July 2013, the Government decided to resume the process of attracting new external investors to Citadele. The international investment bank Société Générale was selected by Latvian Privatisation Agency (LPA) in a tender process to act as its financial advisor. Société Générale would assist the LPA in determining the best model for attracting new investors for the Group during 2014. During this process, Citadele would continue to operate as usual and concentrate on implementing its existing strategies and providing services to Retail, Corporate and Private Capital Management customers.
- Financial journal “EUROMONEY” recognized bank Citadele as the best local bank in Latvia. Citadele Group received in total ten awards of “EUROMONEY”; nine of them for its activities in Latvia and one for Lithuania for having the best clients relations.
- American Express loyalty programme Membership Rewards® launched in Latvia. Citadele was the only cooperation partner of American Express in Latvia entitled to issue American Express payment cards.
- GE Money Bank exited the market - Citadele signed a contract to transfer from GE Money Bank the servicing of accounts, deposits, savings accounts, and credits previously ensured by GE Money Bank for individuals and companies. The transaction also envisaged that the management of GE Money Asset Management funds and the 2nd and 3rd level plans of pensions would be transferred to “Citadele Asset Management”.
- Moody’s Investors Service increased the outook for Citadele Group from negative to stable, maintaining the rating of Citadele Group - B2/Not Prime/E+.
- Citadele repaid State’s Term Deposits and additional Compensation for State Aid - Citadele repaid the last term deposit of 46.94 million Euros to the Ministry of Finance of the Republic of Latvia, hence fully repaying all term deposits made by the state totalling 203.7 million Euros. 2011 results allowed Citadele to transfer LVL 3.5m to the State treasury as additional compensation for the use of state aid in line with the commitments given to the European Commission. Accordingly, the 2011 full year results were restated as per the requirements of International Financial Reporting Standards.
- New professionals joined the bank's management team - the Supervisory Council of Citadele Bank confirmed Guntis Belavskis as Chairman of the Management Board. Santa Purgaile was approved as a Member of the Board.
- Citadele received the highest assessment and recognized as the best managed enterprise in the Baltics in the May 2012 research “State Enterprise Governance in the Baltic States” performed by Baltic Corporate Governance Institute.