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José Ignacio Goirigolzarri during his speech


Goirigolzarri: "We have helped Spanish SMEs finance 9,600 projects worth 1,200 million euros by April"

In the 'VI Congress of the Family Business of Castilla y León', the president of Bankia, has defended "that companies and entrepreneurs are generators of employment and wealth".

Bankia Comunicación

By  Bankia Comunicación

Publish on 
13 June 2019 - 15:30

  • The chairman of Bankia said that, in Castilla y León, the bank has financed 351 projects out of 40 million in the first four months of the year and that almost 10,000 companies and close to 350,000 individuals are customers of the bank
  • Goirigolzarri, who has inaugurated the 'VI Congress of Family Businesses in Castilla y León' at the Valbuena Monastery in San Bernardo (Valladolid), argued that "companies and entrepreneurs generate employment and wealth"

Bankia's chairman, José Ignacio Goirigolzarri, announced that Bankia has helped small and medium-sized Spanish companies to finance 9,600 projects worth 1,200 million euros in the first four months of the year.

Goirigolzarri gave the inaugural speech at the 'VI Congress of Family Businesses in Castilla y León', which takes place today and tomorrow at the Valbuena Monastery. He explained that Bankia financed a total of 351 projects in Castilla y León for an amount of 40 million euros by April, in the presence of the chairman of the Family Business Association of Castilla y León, César Pontvianne; Bankia's North Business corporate director, Belén Martín, and more than 200 entrepreneurs in the region.

"There are already nearly 10,000 companies that trust us, almost 7,000 SMEs, and we have around 350,000 private customers. I would like to reaffirm our support to all citizens and institutions of Castilla y León and, in particular, to the business sector", he added.

Bankia has 123 branches and 612 professionals in the nine provinces of the region and, "our objective is to increase our market share in the business fabric of Castilla y León," said Goirigolzarri.

The chairman of Bankia highlighted the "work" of the Family Business Association "for the promotion and defence" of this type of company. Spain has around 1.1 million family-owned companies, which represent 89% of the total number of companies in Spain, and which are responsible for generating 67% of employment and 57% of the GDP of the national private sector.

"I would like to encourage you to continue fostering a business culture, a task I find essential; because sometimes I get the impression that employers are not valued as they deserve. Undoubtedly, companies and entrepreneurs are great generators of employment and wealth in our country", he said.

Goirigolzarri has emphasised that "Bankia is not only supporting the business fabric of the region by helping to finance projects; Castilla y León is also one of the regions where we are making the most effort in terms of training through the Bankia Foundation for dual vocational training".

Bankia is carrying out multiple initiatives in the promotion of specialised vocational training at the hands of some entities and business associations such as the Chamber of Commerce of Valladolid, the business associations of Burgos, Soria, Ávila and Segovia, and the Confederation of Business Organisations of Castilla y León.

Bankia, "example of transformation"

In his presentation, the chairman of Bankia also analysed the global economic scenario and its evolution since the economic crisis, as well as the process of restructuring and the situation of the Spanish financial system. "Bankia is the clearest example of the transformation of the industry in Spain," he acknowledged.

In this regard, Goirigolzarri explained that when he joined the bank seven years ago, he had "two very clear priorities", namely, "changing corporate governance" and "creating a capitalisation and consolidation plan".

"These were very tough years, but they were necessary to ensure the sustainability of our project and we achieved all the objectives of the restructuring plan," he assured, noting that, in December 2017, all restrictions imposed by the restructuring plan were released, which allowed the merger with BMN in 2018 and consolidated Bankia "as the fourth largest bank in Spain".

"We often say that the history of Bankia has gone from being a history of restructuring to being a history of growth", he added, noting that "the objective" now is "to become the bank preferred by society".

Challenges of the financial industry

The chairman of Bankia has admitted, however, that the financial industry faces "three big challenges": image and reputation, a strategic challenge derived from the change in our customers' habits caused by the technological revolution and profitability. He explained that the current interest rates, together with the deleveraging of companies and families and the increasing regulatory constraints, mean that profitability is below the cost of capital and "is not sustainable over time".

Goirigolzarri pointed out that Bankia aspires to be the "most profitable, efficient and solvent bank in Spain", as it was in 2015 and 2016. "For this purpose we have a management model that is based on strong corporate governance, with customers who are the only reason for the existence of Bankia and a team that is the reason for the great change experienced and who considers itself the owner of the project" .

"I believe very much in intangible values in the business world, which are not included in financial statements, but are essential nonetheless. These intangible values are the engine of a company", he claimed, and added that there will be plenty of "commitment, work, enthusiasm and will for Bankia to be the bank preferred by society".


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