Spanish mega bank, Banco Santander has announced a post pandemic bounce back recovery, posting a 8.1 billion Euro profit for 2021 – a complete reversal of the 8.7 billion Euros loss for for 2020.
The final quarter profit of nearly 2.3 billion Euros for the final quarter are amongst the best results in the banks history.
The bank did particulary well in its North American and UK markets – the latter responsible for 1.6 billion Euros of the banking group´s global profit.
Santander CEO, Ana Botin, said in a statement: “ “Our 2021 results demonstrate once again the value of our scale and presence across both developed and developing markets, with attributable profit 25 percent higher than pre-covid levels in 2019.”
Net banking income, increase to 33.4 billion Euros, compared to 31.9 billion in 2020.
In 2021 we added five million more customers to 153 million – this led to 25% higher net profit than in 2019. All our regions and businesses did well, and we delivered value for our shareholders while building the Santander of tomorrow. https://t.co/aXsLt6yPhq
— Ana Botín (@AnaBotin) February 2, 2022
This dynamic was made possible by a strong increase in customers numbers, with the group now counting almost 153 million customers worldwide.
“We have added five million new customers in the last 12 months alone,” said Botin.
The banking giant, which cut nearly 3,500 jobs at the end of 2020, in September announced an interim shareholder payout of 1.7 billion euros for its 2021 results.
Botín, thanked employees for these “extraordinary results’.
Botín also described the focus on digitalisation for the future of the bank, saying that ‘we are building the Santander of tomorrow’.
However this has come at a cost of branch closures and staff lay-offs as Spain´s bloated banking sector adopts a strategy for digital platforms.
Last year saw the country shed some 19,000 banking jobs.
It is estimated that 11% of all bank branches in Spain have closed in the last two years – nost a victim of mergers but also a move away from the traditional banking model especially amongst younger urban professionals.