Handelsbanken in the UK reports further steady progress through the pandemic, as focus remains on supporting customers

21 April 2021

Summary of Q1 2021 results, January-March 2021 figures compared with January-March 2020 (1): 

  • Lending down 3% to £21.0bn (corporate lending down 2% to £14.3bn)
  • Deposits up 16% to £19.2bn (corporate deposits up 22% to £13.7bn)
  • Assets under management up 19% to £4.1bn
  • Income decreased by 8% to £134.4m
  • Result before credit losses down by 28% to £38.1m 
  • Loan loss ratio of -0.05% (a net recovery)
  • Operating profits down by 17% to £40.8m
Mikael Sorensen, UK CEO , says: “In a quarter dominated by the UK’s third national lockdown, we've maintained focus on our customers' challenges and priorities, providing them with individual guidance, tailored support and the reassurance of our own financial strength and stability.

“In parallel with the vaccine rollout, we welcome the steady reopening of our economy, bringing both respite and fresh opportunities for our customers. Through their close relationships, our branches are well placed to see and meet customers' immediate and longer-term needs, as they seek to capitalise on life after lockdown. 

“Within the bank, work continues to optimise our decentralised business model, enhance our digital offerings and, ultimately, further strengthen our customer relationships. We are also intensifying our focus on climate change and sustainability, with a clear eye to the long term and our responsibilities as a bank. 

“Recently, the Handelsbanken Group committed to achieving net-zero greenhouse gas emissions by 2040, in our own operations and across our lending and investment activities. In the UK, we are working with a range of stakeholders, through the Bankers for Net Zero initiative, to help create the supportive conditions households and businesses will need to adapt successfully to a future, low-carbon economy."

Handelsbanken forms long-term, personal relationships with customers, through its distinct local relationship banking model. Customers have direct access to experienced branch teams who are empowered to make decisions locally, based on each customer’s specific needs and without product or sales targets. 

This formula has, for the sixth time, led to the Bank topping recommendations for overall quality of service in the Competition and Markets Authority’s independent service quality survey for business banking, the results of which were most recently published in February 2021(2). In addition, for the twelfth year in a row, Handelsbanken has been top-ranked for satisfaction, for both personal and business banking, in an independent survey of British bank customers (3).

Handelsbanken launched in the UK in 1982 and, over the years, has developed its UK business, based on customer demand for its personal approach to banking. 

In December 2018, in a demonstration of its long-term commitment to the UK, Handelsbanken became a fully licensed UK bank, Handelsbanken plc, a wholly-owned subsidiary of its Swedish parent, Svenska Handelsbanken AB (publ). 

Handelsbanken has since continued to invest in its UK infrastructure, strengthening its foundations for ongoing growth and securing its long-term presence in the UK. 

Handelsbanken plc has been assigned a long-term credit rating of AA with a negative outlook by international credit ratings agency, Fitch – a position reaffirmed in September 2020. Handelsbanken plc also has a long-term credit rating of AA- with a stable outlook by Standard & Poor’s. The ratings are the same as those given for the subsidiary’s Swedish parent, Svenska Handelsbanken AB (publ), and confirm the Bank’s strength, stability and creditworthiness.

- ENDS -

For more information please contact: 

Mariana Wall, Corporate Communications UK

07483 036 936


Notes to editors

1 Please note that the release reports Svenska Handelsbanken AB (publ)’s UK segment figures for Q1 2021. Segment reporting presents income / expenses and assets / liabilities broken down by business segments. A business segment is a part of the Group and runs operations which generate external or internal income and expenses; and of which the profit / loss is regularly assessed and followed up by the company management, as part of corporate governance. 

2 Competition and Markets Authority, February 2021. For more information, please visit:  https://www.bva-bdrc.com/products/business-banking-service-quality-great-britain/ Opens in a new window.

3 EPSI Rating, September 2020. For more information, please visit -  https://www.epsi-rating.com/wp-content/uploads/2020/09/EPSI-Rating-UK-Banking-2020.pdf Opens in a new window.

For photos and logos, please visit: www.handelsbanken.co.uk/media.

Handelsbanken is the trading name of Handelsbanken plc, which is incorporated in England and Wales with company number 11305395. Registered office: 3 Thomas More Square, London, E1W 1WY, UK. Handelsbanken plc is authorised by the Prudential Regulation Authority and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority and the Prudential Regulation Authority. Financial Services Register number 806852.

Handelsbanken plc is a wholly-owned subsidiary of Svenska Handelsbanken AB (publ).

In Sweden, Handelsbanken is one of country’s leading banks with approximately 700 branches across six home markets, and over 12,000 employees.

Handelsbanken was established in Stockholm in 1871 and has operated in the UK since 1982. The UK is one of Handelsbanken’s six “home market” countries, where the bank offers relationship banking to domestic market customers, the other countries being Sweden, Denmark, Norway, Finland and the Netherlands. 

In the UK, Handelsbanken is a relationship bank with a decentralised way of working, a strong local presence due to a nationwide network of branches and a long-term approach to customer relations. Handelsbanken specialises in providing personalised and competitive banking services to both businesses and individuals, as well as wealth and investment management services through its UK subsidiary Handelsbanken Wealth & Asset Management. Each Handelsbanken branch operates as a small business enabling it to make decisions at a local level and provide a service that is bespoke. The focus is always on the need of the individual customer and not on the sale of specific products, hence neither the bank nor its wealth and asset management subsidiary offers its staff bonuses.

For information regarding sustainability at Handelsbanken, please see here: https://www.handelsbanken.co.uk/en/about-us/sustainability.