Nordea has completed the acquisition of Gjensidige Bank, a Norwegian online bank, after securing regulatory nod.

The transaction, valued at €578m, was first announced last July.

The deal involves acquisition of all Gjensidige Bank shares.

Until further notice, the acquired entity will retain its independent identity and existing brand name.

Through the deal, Nordea is said to become the second largest bank in Norway.

Around 200 Gjensidige Bank staff and 186,000 customers with €5.2bn assets will join Nordea as part of the deal.

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Nordea head of personal banking in Norway John Sætre said: “This acquisition underlines our strategy and ambition to grow in the important Norwegian market.

“Our goal is to provide our customers with a broader selection of services and innovative banking solutions.”

At the same time, the two parties signed a mutual distribution agreement related to non-life insurance and financial products in Norway.

Commenting on the transaction, Gjensidige CEO Helge Leiro Baastad said: “We have high expectations for the cooperation with Nordea.

“We complement each other well, and there’s a lot of enthusiasm in both organisations.

“The agreement will also provide the opportunity to expand our customer reach through one of the leading Nordic banks with digitalisation and innovation high on the agenda.”

Nordea making moves

Nordea has been active lately. It signed a $540m multi-year managed services agreement with IBM Services to outsource its IBM Z operations.

IBM Z is a family name referring all IBM mainframe computers starting from the Z900 model.

The new agreement builds on Nordea-IBM association which began in 2003.

Nordea will outsource most of its IBM Z infrastructure services in five countries. Following the transfer, it will continue to have access to technical upgrades as well as cognitive services.

As per the contract, a group of Nordea employees will also transfer to IBM. The managed service agreement is different from the earlier signed mainframe contract.

In December 2018, it launched an instant reporting API. It allowed its corporate clients to access their accounts and integrate real-time data with their systems.

According to Nordea, Instant Reporting is its first product that moves beyond legal requirements in PSD2.

The new proposition is also said to be the first commercially viable offering developed as part of the bank’s open banking initiative.

With the new tool, customers can get real-time account data every time they log on to their own file-based systems.