Berenberg Reinforces Business Model With Focus On Digital Services

After a successful 2019, Germany’s oldest private bank is looking to expand its client offerings this year.

Founded in 1590, Berenberg finished out 2019 with a net profit from operations of €60.5 million—beating the previous year’s earnings by 160 percent. In addition, net commission income increased 28 percent to a historical high of €356 million. Gross income at the Investment Bank division rose 36.5 percent to €275 million, and the return on equity tripled to 28.6 percent.

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The company explained that in recent years, it has been focused on reinforcing its business model with an eye on investing in growth. With that in mind, Berenberg has announced a partnership with Berlin-based fintech Moonfare to offer customers digital access to top-tier private equity funds.

“We are delighted to offer our customers outstanding access to this asset class through our cooperation with Moonfare,” Klaus Naeve, Head of Wealth Management Germany at Berenberg said in a statement. “The selection of private equity offers, combined with low minimum levels of investment for this asset class and a completely digital process, is unique in the European market.”

Private equity experienced significant growth in 2019, with global assets under management at more than $4 trillion (USD). Berlin-based Moonfare launched in 2016, building a technology platform that allows individuals to invest in top-tier funds with low minimums and low fees. Its team hails from a variety of leading investment and technology companies including KKR, Apax Partners, J.P. Morgan, AngelList, DeliveryHero, and PitchBook. The fintech’s platform facilitates quick, uncomplicated investments while still complying with regulatory requirements.

The platform is currently available in several European and Asian countries. Last year the company marked a significant milestone by exceeding €100 million in assets under management (AuM)—and expects to hit €1 billion AuMs by 2021.

The partnership allows Berenberg’s advisors to add top-tier private equity funds to their portfolio recommendations when they match the customer’s investment goals and strategy. Both the advisors and their clients have access to the digital Berenberg/Moonfare platform, where they can review and subscribe for investment opportunities.