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Bank shareholders urged to invest in a sustainable economic future


30-07-2012 |

  • Join 21,500 shareholders throughout Europe
  • Invest in Triodos Bank for €74 per share
  • Average return of 4.2%* over last five years

With further disclosures on pay and profit in last week's half year reports from Barclays and Santander UK, some bank investors may be questioning whether these financial institutions still deserve their support.** Ethical bank Triodos is urging bank shareholders to consider their bank investments and ask whether they could benefit from a fairer and more sustainable return elsewhere.

Over the next three years, as the appetite for alternatives to the established financial system increases, Triodos Bank expects to grow substantially. In recent weeks it has seen new customer applications increase by more than 80%. To support further growth it is seeking to raise new capital and is offering UK investors the chance to join more than 21,500 other shareholders across Europe by buying depository receipts in the Bank.

Triodos Bank depository receipts offer a fair, stable return. Investors in the bank over the last five years have seen an average return of 4.2%. Triodos Bank depository receipts have increased in value over the last decade from €68 per depository receipt in 2006 to €74 today. The bank has maintained a dividend of €1.95 per depository receipt in each of the last three years. 

Charles Middleton, Triodos Bank UK managing director, said: 'Triodos Bank offers straightforward banking. Posting a decent profit, being strongly capitalised and having a stable funding base of savers' deposits that are lent out prudently to socially and environmentally productive businesses, are integral parts of our approach. We think this straightforward, socially useful banking model is the way banking should be.

'Recent volatility has demonstrated some of the inherently unsustainable elements at the heart of the financial markets, and created a wave of public interest in alternatives. We've demonstrated that another way isn't just possible, but can flourish - helping to build a more diverse, healthier and more sustainable economy in the process.'

Triodos Bank has seen its income, balance sheet, net profit and assets under management grow steadily over 2011 and increase further during the first six months of this year. Over two decades the bank has built assets under management of €6.8 billion, achieved balance sheet growth of around 20% per year, and delivered a consistent profit. It has made around 22,000 loans to sustainable businesses such as Ecotricity, Cafedirect, Glastonbury's Worthy Farm and Hugh Fearnley Whittingstall's River Cottage in the UK, and has welcomed more than 350,000 savings customers across its operations in the UK, the Netherlands, Spain, Belgium and Germany.

An independent report*** in March this year demonstrated that values-based banks, such as Triodos, have outperformed traditional banks in many areas, including financial indicators such as return on assets, growth in loans and deposits, and capital strength.

The report, which compared the performance of values-based banks against 'too big to fail' banks over a three year period between 2007 and 2010, showed values-based banks have higher levels of, and better quality, capital, with an average solvency (BIS1) ratio of 14% at the end of 2011, compared to less than 10% among mainstream banks. Values-based banks also demonstrated an average Equity/Asset ratio of more than 9% compared to less than 5% at mainstream banks.

Middleton added: 'People are beginning to wake up to the fact that there are credible alternatives to the established financial system, and that they can get a social and environmental return on their money, as well a decent and sustainable financial return.

'Triodos Bank shares are not listed on any stock exchange to ensure we don't become diverted from our sustainable banking mission in the drive for a fast profit or negatively impacted by the vagaries of market sentiment. Nor do we engage in some of the other financial activities, such as sub-prime debt or complex financial derivatives, which can cause large swings in a bank's share price. And we are the only bank that is 100% transparent about how our shareholders' money is used by publishing details of every business we lend to on the website
www.knowwhereyourmoneygoes.co.uk '

For more information on buying Triodos Bank depository receipts investors should call 0800 328 2181 or speak to their financial adviser. A full prospectus can be found online at www.triodos.co.uk

Last week Triodos Bank launched a new short film, 'Small. The New Big'. The film calls upon savers and investors to put their money where their mouth is to help shape a fairer, more transparent and more sustainable banking system. Since launching a week ago the film has been viewed almost 20,000 times in the UK.


For more information, or a case study, please contact:
Lisa Stanley, lisa.stanley@triodos.co.uk 0117 980 9721 / 07983 002013
Will Ferguson, William.ferguson@triodos.co.uk 0117 980 9770 / 07899 965640

Notes to editors
*Average Return on Investment (RoI) per year in euro over the five years to 31.03.2012. Euro return is calculated by VWD Group, an external group which provides an independent calculation of our RoI and is based on a pro rata share of net asset value and assumes reinvested dividends. Past performance is no guarantee of future results.
**FT article 25 June, High pay persists despite poor performance

About Triodos Bank Depository receipts

Shareholders can sell their depository receipts at any time. The depository receipts are not listed on any stock exchange. Instead, Triodos Bank N.V. maintains a euro-denominated matched-bargain market, which ordinarily means depository receipts can be bought and sold within a month. Very large stakes may take longer. No shareholder may hold more than just under 10% of the total number of Depository Receipts in issue to prevent any one shareholder exerting undue influence over Triodos Bank's mission and objectives.

Triodos Bank believes it is crucial that its mission and independence are protected. All of Triodos Bank's ordinary shares are held in a special trust called the Foundation for the Administration of Triodos Bank Shares, or SAAT to use its Dutch abbreviation. This body ensures that decisions about financial profit are not made at the expense of Triodos Bank's social and environmental goals.

Shares in Triodos Bank are held by investors through Depository Receipts. SAAT issues these Depository Receipts for Triodos Bank Shares to individuals and institutions. As well as issuing Depository Receipts, SAAT exercises all of the voting rights for Triodos Bank Shares.

About Triodos Bank

Triodos Bank only finances enterprises which create social, environmental or cultural added value. Key sectors include organic food and farming, renewable energy, social housing, and fair trade. Transparency is a core value and Triodos publishes details of every business it lends to.  A range of personal savings accounts is offered, and full banking services are available for businesses and charities. Triodos Bank is an independent bank founded in the Netherlands in 1980. Its principles and independence are protected through a special shareholding trust. The UK office opened in 1995 and is based in Bristol.

Triodos Bank offers a range of personal savings accounts as well as other investment opportunities. The Triodos Online ISA currently pays up to 2.52% AER and the Triodos Online Saver Plus pays 2.52% AER including a 1.5% 12 month bonus. Ethical savings bonds paying up to 3.75% AER are also available, as well as the Ethical Junior Cash ISA paying 2.01% AER.

Triodos also offers investments in Triodos Renewables plc which invests in a range of sustainable energy projects, and the Triodos Microfinance Fund which helps increase access to financial services for the working poor in developing countries by investing in microfinance institutions and banks across Africa, Asia, Latin America and Eastern Europe.


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