A portrait of DZ BANK AG
DZ BANK AG functions as a central institution for around 1,000 cooperative banks in Germany. It also operates as a corporate bank in the corporates, capital markets, and transaction banking sectors and acts as the holding company for the entities of the DZ BANK Group.
The merger of DZ BANK and WGZ BANK into DZ BANK – Die Initiativbank was completed onAugust 1, 2016, bringing to an end the process of consolidating the cooperative central institutions. In its role as the central institution, DZ BANK is responsible for supporting the business of the independent cooperative banks in their regions and strengthening their competitiveness. The combination of providing customer support locally and product expertise centrally has proved to be highly effective.
DZ BANK Group
DZ BANK AG, Bausparkasse Schwäbisch Hall, DG HYP, the Union Investment Group, TeamBank, R+V Versicherung, DZ Privatbank, the VR LEASING Group, WL BANK, and other specialist providers are the entities that make up the DZ BANK Group.
With their strong brands, they constitute key pillars in the range of financial products and services offered by the Volksbanken Raiffeisenbanken cooperative financial network. The entities in the DZ BANK Group support the cooperative banks by providing products and services on a decentralized basis for private customers, corporate customers, capital markets, and transaction banking. This ensures that the cooperative banks are able to offer their clients a comprehensive range of financial services. Approximately 30 million customers, 18.4 million of whom are members and therefore the owners of their cooperative bank, attest to the success of the cooperative financial network.
The merger of DZ BANK and WGZ BANK represents an important step in ensuring the entire cooperative financial network is ready for the future. The merger means that the DZ BANK Group can now secure an even stronger position in the market. Our sound capital adequacy and liquidity are key factors here along with our good reputation, one of the best bank ratings in Europe and, following the merger, a complete range of products and services.
With total assets of €509.45 billion, the DZ BANK Group is one of Germany’s largest financial service providers. Its profit before taxes amounted to €2.2 billion in 2016 (2015: €2.45 billion). This healthy level enabled the DZ BANK Group to further strengthenits capital situation and end the year with a common equity Tier 1 capital ratio of 14.5 percent (December 31, 2015: 13.9 percent). The results achieved in 2016 reflect the good performance of our group’s customer business and, at the same time, the successful merger with WGZ BANK. The DZ BANK Group has made good progress in attracting new customers and expanding existing business relationships. At the end of 2016, the group employed approximately 30,000 people worldwide, of whom 28,100 worked in Germany.
Sustainability in the DZ BANK Group
In 2014, to step up the dialog on sustainability, the entities in the DZ BANK Group founded the Group Corporate Responsibility Committee (CRC). The shared objective is to exploit market opportunities and avoid risk while enhancing corporate citizenship. The sustainability coordinators of the participating entities meet six times a year in the Group CRC to discuss current developments, share experiences, and plan new activities. In autumn 2016, WL BANK, formerly a subsidiary of WGZ BANK, and DVB BANK became permanent members of the committee (SR 16).
As part of their joint sustainability activities, the entities in the DZ BANK Group have introduced groupwide supplier standards, developed a common database structure, and together signed the UN Global Compact. In recent years, they also have increased the extent to which they collaborate on matters related to environmental protection and climate change. At the end of 2016, the Group CRC began developing the groupwide climate strategy. This strategy is based on the German government’s national Climate Action Plan and the principles set out in the Sustainable Development Goals adopted by the United Nations (UN). In 2016, the Group CRC also focused on the groupwide sustainability ratings, the implementation of sustainability in the core business, and sustainability reporting.
In 2017, the Group CRC is mainly working on improving supplier management, developing groupwide sustainability guidelines for the lending business, and setting up a common reporting system based on the UN Global Compact.
For some years now, the DZ BANK Group has been one of the leading financial institutions in terms of sustainability. This is regularly confirmed by the sustainability rating received from the sustainability ratings agency oekom research AG, which has awarded its prime status for particularly sustainable companies to the DZ BANK Group since 2011. In particular, oekom cites the DZ BANK Group’s strong commitment to environmental and social issues. Following the merger of DZ BANK and WGZ BANK and the consolidation of the two banks’ ratings by oekom, the DZ BANK Group continues to hold prime status (C+).
This Sustainability Report relates to DZ BANK AG. The other entities in the DZ BANK Group report separately on their own sustainability activities.
Further information on DZ BANK Group