Dublin misses out as Daiwa picks Frankfurt as post-Brexit base

Toyko-based firm had shortlisted Irish capital as an option after Britain leaves bloc

Despite its small size and dull image, Frankfurt is favoured because it is the financial capital of Europe’s biggest economy and also home to the European Central Bank. Photograph: Ralph Orlowski/Reuters

Despite its small size and dull image, Frankfurt is favoured because it is the financial capital of Europe’s biggest economy and also home to the European Central Bank. Photograph: Ralph Orlowski/Reuters

 

Japan’s Daiwa will set up a subsidiary in Frankfurt, making it one of the first big international brokerages to publicly chose Germany to keep a foothold in the EU after Britain leaves the bloc.

The Toyko-based firm had shortlisted Dublin among candidate cities to host European operations.

The announcement, which comes as several other banks prepare a similar move, shows financial groups are pressing on with plans to relocate part of their businesses, regardless of the shape of a final deal reached in Brexit divorce talks.

Such moves are set to further bolster Frankfurt’s influence. Despite its small size and dull image, the city is favoured because it is the financial capital of Europe’s biggest economy and also home to the European Central Bank.

Nomura, Japan’s biggest brokerage, has also picked Frankfurt as its European Union headquarters after Brexit, one person with knowledge of the matter said. Several other banks are poised to make a similar move, said two people familiar with those discussions.

Daiwa had previously said it favoured the German city, because London-based staff could easily be transferred to its investment banking branch there. Daiwa said in a statement on Thursday it would apply for a licence in Germany and its move would “ensure that Daiwa can continue to service its clients in EU after the United Kingdom leaves”.

The group has said it would still keep staff in London even after Brexit. It has 450 staff working in the EU now, mostly in the British capital. Frankfurt, which has long grappled with an unfavourable backwater image, promotes itself as a stable city for banks seeking to relocate, while the German government and politicians have discreetly welcomed those looking to move.

Britain’s future following Brexit talks to leave the trading bloc is more uncertain than ever after an election where voters denied its prime minister, Theresa May, a majority in parliament. Against this backdrop, Germany’s steady, if sometimes grey, image holds appeal. – (Reuters)