Icebank was established in 1986 by the savings banks in Iceland. It was wholly owned by the savings banks until October 2007 when ownership was opened up to the Bank's top management and several local investors. The original purpose of the Bank was to act as a central institution for the savings banks providing them with a range of services. However, the Bank has always had a portfolio of customers other than savings banks. Traditionally, these customers looked towards the Bank for short-term or long-term credits but the Bank has always stood ready to provide them with all kinds of wholesale and investment banking services.

In 2006, Icebank's owners agreed on a new strategic vision for the Bank. This was considered necessary because of the fundamental changes occurring in the Icelandic banking sector, not least the rapid and successful overseas expansion of the bigger Icelandic banks and the continuous growth of the larger savings banks, which has made them more and more willing to act on their own rather than require the services of Icebank. The Bank will continue to offer its traditional and comprehensive services to the savings banks, but the emphasis will be on providing companies, professional investors and other large customers, both in Iceland and abroad, with a wide range of services, including long-term credits, foreign exchange and derivatives. It also supports Icelandic companies that are building up operations abroad through advice, lending and equity participation, at the same time taking part in various types of syndicated loans and structured finance both in Iceland and abroad. Thus, the Bank will continue to stay away from the retail market and focus instead on wholesale and investment banking services.

One of the main points of the new strategic vision for Icebank is that ownership will be expanded and the Bank's shares listed on the Iceland Stock Exchange with the aim of raising equity in support of further growth. The first step in this direction was taken in October 2007 as outlined above.




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